Jay alfred

Brains and realities

© Copyright 2006. Jay Alfred. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or  transmitted, in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise,  without the written prior permission of the author. Note for Librarians: a cataloguing record for this book that includes Dewey Decimal Classification and US  Library of Congress numbers is available from the Library and Archives of Canada. The complete cataloguing  record can be obtained from their online database at: www.collectionscanada.ca/amicus/index-e.html ISBN 1-4120-8877-1 Printed in Victoria, BC, Canada Illustrations by Diane Lucas.

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Prologue . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . v ParT I right vs . left Brain . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1 Intuitive versus discriminating (rational) Mind . . . . . 11 The Intelligent, Intuitive ‘Unconscious’ . . . . . . . . . . . . 19 Complementary Thinking & feeling . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28 Split reality . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 37 ParT II The Brain & Mystical experiences . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 46 deactivating the Brain . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 53 Virtual reality . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 64 Quantum-Holographic Theory of Perception . . . . . . . 74 The Insubstantial Universe . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 84 ParT III The Really astonishing Hypothesis . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 91 Superposition in the full-Void . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 98 Cancellation in the empty Void . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 108 Meditation & the Brain . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 122 ParT IV Meta-Neurology . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 132 Universal Brain-Mind . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 144 full-Time Mystic, Part-Time Scientist . . . . . . . . . . . . 167 epilogue . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 174 references . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 176

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Other Books By Jay alfred Our Invisible Bodies Between the Moon and earth .

space and time are meaningless . Ultimately. But how do we prove that? do we use our three. The three-dimensional world constructed by the brain is a reduction and a limited interpretation of what is really out there . Both space and time may be illusions . all moments are really one .e . there is a bold assertion that what is out there is a paradoxical ‘full-void’ — i . The Surangama Sutra of the Buddhists emphatically point out that location in space is illusionary . apparently.Prologue This distinction between past. a nothingness which contains everything . Physicist v . Therefore now is eternity . In this void. In eastern religious philosophy and certain Western philosophies. this void has been ‘experienced’ by mystics and advanced meditators — as recorded quite extensively in religious scriptures and the metaphysical literature . present.dimensional instruments to probe and our three-dimensional consciousness to verify? What exactly is out there? Contrary to the conventional neuroscientific three-dimensional model. Saint augustine believed in an ever-present eternity which was not accessible to humans . david Bohm. cutting-edge physics tells us that the world ‘out there’ is multi-dimensional and not solid but a cacophony of waveforms . and future is only an illusion albert einstein. Physicist Conventional neuroscience assumes that there is a real objective world ‘out there’ and that the brain constructs a world that is representative of this world .

To what extent this continuum manifests as space and how much of it manifests as time varies according to the relative motion of the observer . Science has made significant advances in studying the brain during meditative states . What we observe as space and what we observe as time are now regarded as two aspects of a more fundamental spacetime continuum . observations have been made of specific areas in the brain which are activated or deactivated during meditation . Hence. while being limited by its own processing power and capabilities . is not directly perceivable. The real object. is transcendent. what Kant called the ‘Thing-inItself’.jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS for a long time it was assumed that space and time were fundamental to the underlying reality. beyond our space-time. Mathematician Advances in Brain Science recently. But we are perhaps deceiving ourselves when we assume that they are also fundamental to the underlying reality . completely unknowable… Perceptions are in. in a sense. but einstein’s Theory of Special relativity toppled this assumption . illusions . Using cutting-edge medical imaging methods. They are shaped and colored by our subjective sense of space and time . Is it possible to modify the operation of the brain to allow a meditator to experience a totally different reality? Can we bypass the brain’s constructions to reach a more fundamental reality? It is becoming increasingly evident that we are blocked by our perceptual apparatus from experiencing a more primordial reality . Without the glasses we could see nothing . certain studies have shown that various areas in the right hemisphere grow thicker with regular meditation . In other words. It has also been widely observed that many meditative traditions emphasise the activation and development of the right hemisphere of the brain . it would make sense to look at how the human brain processes information to understand better the models that it uses to construct its interpretation of the underlying reality. we see only what is transmitted to us by our space-time spectacles . the world external to our minds. they are both subject to our perception within specific frames of reference which provide three-dimensional frameworks to structure our mental image of the world . In fact. Martin Gardner. Space and time are like the two lenses in a pair of glasses . The actual world. vi .

We will then propose the astonishing hypothesis that the experiences of mystics are reconcilable to modern physics. Vesselin Petkov. and that the brain can be made to experience a more fundamental reality where space and time do not operate . We will then explore what happens to the brain during mystical experiences as revealed by recent medical studies . Physicist The Journey We will begin the journey by first discussing the different methods of processing sensory information in the right and left hemispheres of the human brain . Will it be reunited with religion’s inner essence and wisdom in the next 500 years? vii .| prologue …our senses cannot be fully trusted especially when it comes to such fundamental questions as the dimensionality of the world …there is nothing three-dimensional in the objective world…the three-dimensionalist view contradicts [einstein’s] Special [Theory of] relativity and more importantly the experiments which confirm its consequences . alongside descriptions from modern physics . after this. descriptions of this reality recorded in religious and metaphysical literature will be reviewed. Then we will proceed to see how the human brain connects to parallel universes and review its non-local nature . readers will however note an undercurrent of questions regarding the nature and future of Science and how it can be reconciled to the totality of human experience . shaking-off the dust of centuries of non-verified claims and superstitions . …spacetime is not merely a mathematical space but represents a fourdimensional external world which is not directly reflected in our perceptions . we will take a look at what modern physics tells us of the nature of the universe or multiverse. comparing it with what mystics have said about it . Science parted ways with religion more than 500 years ago.

at right angles to real time.I still believe the universe has a beginning in real time. But there’s another kind of time. imaginary time. in which the universe has no beginning or end . Stephen Hawking . at the big bang .

there is abundant scientific evidence that demonstrates 1 . However. participate in this final conclusion . but could not name it . the patient could explain and demonstrate its use. When shown to the left eye (the right ‘non-verbal’ brain processes data from the left visual field). which are connected by the corpus callosum. which connected the left and right brains. like many other parts of our anatomy. both halves or hemispheres of the brain. is made up of two halves. They are connected to each other by a thick cable of nerves at the base of each brain.CHaPTer 1 right vs . a left brain and a right brain . he was stunned by the fact that his ‘split-brain’ patients behaved as if they had two minds and two persons in one body! He found that the patient could name an object but could not explain what it was used for when the object was shown only to the right eye (the left ‘verbal’ brain processes data from the right visual field) . called the corpus callosum . left Brain Our brain. It appears that when a normal person names an object and explains its purpose. roger Sperry received the 1981 Nobel Prize for his work in this area . When roger Sperry severed the corpus callosum in the sixties. Normal People Split-brain studies imply but do not prove that ordinary people have two minds . each running a different program to process basically the same input . It is analogous to a cable or network connection between two incredibly fast and immensely powerful computers. Split-brain vs.

he will perform better when flashed on his left side (or to the right brain) . The findings mean that the cognitive abilities of the left and right brains of split-brain patients are similar to those of ordinary people . according to Bernice 2 . and the findings are consistently similar to those in split-brain patients . the pattern reverses . we are reminded that our ‘ordinary’ minds are more similar to split-brain minds than some neuroscientists would like us to believe . the neocortex) and lower (for example.jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS the relevance of split-brain findings for ordinary people with intact brains . Michael Gazzaniga 3 Different Modes of Thinking The term ‘left brain’ used in this book includes both the higher (i . he will respond faster and more accurately if the task involves language .1 When all the evidence is sifted and weighed. and there’s more activity in the left brain than in the right . In split-brain patients the left brain uses different strategies from the right brain . the ‘right brain’ includes both the higher and lower brain structures on the right side of the brain . his left brain). When they imagine space. whereas those who majored in architecture had a correspondingly higher level in the right brain . One study on occupational preferences in cognitive styles showed that those who declared english as a major had a greater blood flow in the left brain (the verbal brain). These studies and others involving hearing through the left and right ears have been repeated many hundreds of times in ordinary people. or specialization in each hemisphere . dr frederic Schiffer 2 despite myriad exceptions. If an ordinary person is seated in front of a screen and asked to look forward and an object is flashed very briefly to his right side (i . the bulk of split-brain research has revealed an enormous degree of lateralisation. the blood-flow pattern changes in their brains. the amygdala) brain structures on the left side of the brain . Scientists have found that ordinary people have the same differences in cognitive abilities between sides as split-brain patients . for example. Similarly. PeT scans show that even when normal people (with intact brains) talk. Ordinary people are also shown to be better at seeing the overall picture if an image is flashed to the right brain .e . If you flash a spatial task.e . asking the subject to identify if a dot is within a circle.

intuitive.4 The left brain processes information from parts to whole. each of us prefers one mode over the other . Right Brain is Holistic. processes from the whole to parts .7 When we lack a higher-level perception. the right brain however. the brain does not assemble three individual lines into a triangle . holistic. Seeing the large organisation is a specialization of the right brain . the right brain activities appear random.rIGHT VS lefT Br aIN | Chapter 1 McCarthy. the two brains control two different ‘modes’ of thinking or cognitive styles . uses Top-Down Processing according to Ornstein. synthesizing and looks at wholes . We only see a ‘triangle’ when we change our viewpoint . analytical and looks at parts. To some 3 . While the left brain is logical. 5 More specifically. from the early studies of the split-brain through recent research on the whole competently functioning brain.6 Figure 1: Regions of the Brain Many split-brain studies confirm that the right brain is superior at assembling pieces of the world into a coherent picture . the world will seem like a disconnected maze of individual experiences. Newberg and d’ aquili believe that the right parietal lobe is involved in a holistic (top-down) approach to things whereas the left parietal lobe is involved in a more reductionist and analytic (bottom-up) process . rational. the scientific understanding has become increasingly certain of the right brain’s role in seeing the large view . sequential.

The left hemisphere is more focused on details and the right hemisphere is better at perceiving overall patterns . When you process on the left side.8 This has also been alluded to in the metaphysical literature . Propositional is an ‘either-or’ or ‘true-false’ approach — either one attribute or its contrary is accepted as true at a point in time .’12 according to Joseph Bogen13. on the other hand. The left side handles the small. It uses asymmetric (classical or aristotelian) logic . logical manner . this evidences a ‘higher-dimensional’ view of the subject . Metaphors. In order to do this. while the ‘lower mind’ [associated with the left brain] studies its details .9 Right Brain is a Parallel Processor and Appositional experiments conducted by Bianki concluded that in animals the parallelspatial processor of information processing is localised in the right hemisphere and the sequential-temporal processor in the left one . Whereas the left brain has a ‘linear perspective’ in that it sees three individual onedimensional objects i . like indirect language.e . sequential. the human ‘propositional’ left hemisphere is complemented by an ‘appositional mind’ on the right side .jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS extent. Many right brain damaged patients also seem to have difficulty in identifying the gist of passages . lines. ‘reducing input from the environment to components and sequences is a result of the left side’s form of organisation . To ‘appose’ means to place attributes in juxtaposition. you use intuition . you look for the pieces so that you can draw logical conclusions . convey a significance that is different from the literal meaning . If you process primarily on the right side of the brain.e . sarcasm or irony. a triangle . The use of metaphor involves the right hemisphere . the right brain. sees a whole two-dimensional object i . This also goes for language processing . the ‘other dimensions’ of the subject) . we need to be able to see things as a whole . the overall shapes of objects and the word shape . precise links that carry the smaller.10 according to Kaiser. The right brain uses a ‘bothand’ approach . more precise meanings and movements . It’s this specialization that contributes to one side being good for the analysis of small features versus the holistic vision of the other side . The right side seems to be specialized for the large elements.’ 4 . in a superposition or in parallel . but they cannot always judge what the request means in context (in other words. It uses ‘symmetric logic’ — some might say ‘quantum logic . ‘The left brain processes in a linear. you use information piece by piece to solve a math problem or work out a science experiment . People with right hemisphere damage can always understand the literal meaning of a request.’11 McCarthy says. Charles leadbeater says that the ‘causal’ [or higher dimensional] consciousness deals with the essence of a thing. When you read and listen.

We will describe this type of consciousness or awareness (associated frequently with the left brain) as ‘divergent awareness’ in this book (or conscious awareness .’ Some have even questioned whether the right brain is conscious at all . we could say that the right hemisphere is able to hold an attribute and its corresponding contrary attribute in superposition (or in parallel) whereas the left hemisphere attends to one attribute at a time — first one attribute and then the contrary attribute — in a sequential manner . the internal logic used by the right brain is different from the left brain . even single-celled organisms move away from certain stimuli and move towards other stimuli by differentiating favorable and unfavorable sensations . while the role of the left hemisphere is to focus on only one meaning .’15 In other words. acidic from alkaline.) a perceptual system. eccles thinks that the right hemisphere is not conscious at all because split-brain patients cannot express the contents of their right hemispheres in words . ‘There are no pictures without light and shadow . The left side has long been considered the dominant hemisphere. Generalizing.’ describe the right brain as the ‘minor brain . How does consciousness arise? Consciousness is how we feel the affirmation-negation contrast . responsible for the uniquely human gift of language and because of this — many have argued — our self-awareness and intelligence . This would be the opposite of being conscious — but we should not conclude that it is ‘unconscious .rIGHT VS lefT Br aIN | Chapter 1 Hence. according to Ornstein. light from dark and so on . The nature of conscious awareness is therefore necessarily dualistic . acidic from alkaline. Paramahansa yogananda says. there is no consciousness of this or that without discrimination or differentiation . light from dark and so on . which is neither attracted to an attribute nor repelled by its complementary attribute. does not differentiate hot from cold. many researchers in the field have now concluded that the role of the right hemisphere seems to involve maintaining the alternative meanings of ambiguous words in immediate memory. This is obviously a premature conclusion .’ We will describe this type of consciousness as ‘convergent awareness’ (or 5 . alfred North Whitehead 14 The Hindu saint. Consciousness or conscious awareness arises when complementary attributes are differentiated in the environment — hot from cold. Right Brain has Convergent Awareness Karl Popper and Nobel winning neuroscientist John eccles. authors of ‘The Self and Its Brain.

relative to the right. the world is interpreted from the vantage point of the self and diverges out from the self to the environment . therefore. damage to the right brain not only destroys the visual information coming from the left. the right brain believes the organism includes the environment and subsequently models this extended self . on the other hand. believes events in the world follow the organism’s rules of organisation . the right brain handles ‘space’ and the left brain ‘time . there is more gray matter relative to white. the whole brain gives us the experience of ‘name and form’ in spacetime . 6 . It oscillates from an attribute to its complementary contrary attribute over time. This configuration is similar to Bernard Baars’ idea of a ‘theater (of consciousness)’19 which combines convergent input with divergent output . and is analytical and discriminatory — this is normally associated with the left brain . In other words. The left brain has a greater density of cells than the right. carrying out parallel processing of dissimilar attributes or synthesizing inputs from two or more serial processing streams — this is normally associated with the right brain . emphasises processing within regions while the right brain emphasises processing across regions . 20 The left brain verbalizes and is time-like .16 anatomical evidence supports these inferences . Convergent awareness is symmetric and appositional. The choices for these terms arise from the different ways in which the two brains relate the self with the environment . according to Kaiser. The left brain (and lower structures on the left side of the brain). and more importantly. evidence from both normal and brain-damaged populations supports this dichotomy. The self is interpreted from the vantage point of the world and converges into the self from the environment . according to Kaiser .jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS unconscious awareness) in this book . The Right Brain is Visual and Spatially Intelligent according to Ornstein. with the opposite pattern in the right brain . In contrast. the right and left brains combine convergent awareness with divergent awareness . We can say. but more importantly our understanding of space .18 divergent awareness is asymmetric .17 This suggests that the organisation of the left brain. whereas the left brain uses interior rules (from its self) to perceive and analyse the environment . In other words. the right brain communicates using visual messages and is space-like . the right brain uses exterior rules (from the environment) in its neuronal organisation and processing. In other words.’ Together. that the left brain handles ‘name’ and the right brain handles ‘form’. Similarly. damage to the left brain destroys the ability of the right brain to verbalize occasionally (using the left brain’s speech centres) .

21 The gradual elimination of ‘blissful’ states experienced in childhood may be due to the development of the discriminatory left brain .23 all this suggests that when we (most of us) come into this world we are right-brain dominant. The old saying that we have to become like a child to ‘enter the kingdom of heaven’ also becomes more meaningful with our understanding of brain development . this ability deteriorates as the left brain develops . Spear has shown that an infant attends to more events in an episode than even an adult . We all use it every time we drive a car and have to judge the distance to the car in front of us . Aging and Brain Dominance The rates of development between the two brains are different during a person’s lifetime . as the child acquires language . declines with normal aging . from ages 3 to 5. as already noted.rIGHT VS lefT Br aIN | Chapter 1 Spatial intelligence is that aspect of our intelligence that allows us to make judgments about the three-dimensional world in which we live . but when we leave it we are left-brain dominant . does this provide evidence on why the most creative work of many artists and scientists are normally found earlier in life rather than later? Avoiding Generalizations The physical boundaries of the left and right brains must not be taken too seriously . Klisz found that adults in their early forties could best be differentiated from adults in their fifties by impairment tests to their right brains . using a top-down process . a predominantly right brain ability. while the left brain may see three lines. memory for faces. including the flow of information across the corpus callosum . the right brain sees a triangle . the left brain becomes dominant . the left hemisphere develops more rapidly. a football player catching a pass relies on spatial intelligence to judge the trajectory of the ball . many researchers report an age-related drop in spatial memory while no significant analogous changes occur in left brain tasks . Many aging studies show a decline in right brain functions as we age . However. for example. This spatial intelligence is related to the ability of the right brain to see things holistically. advanced math courses require good spatial intelligence .22 as we age. In other words. an architect uses it to visualise what a building will look like when it is completed . the left brain attempts to control all aspects of the organism. also. Since the right brain is also associated with creativity. The 7 . The right brain develops at a faster rate during the first two years in humans . We are ultimately concerned more with the types of processing that goes on in the brain — whether bottom-up (starting from parts) or topdown (starting from the whole) rather than their physical locations .

Based on this new form of surgery. according to him. a neurobiologist at the California Institute of Technology. if they do not speak to each other — they exist essentially as two major circuits . Gordon and his co-workers J e Bogen and roger Sperry believe that tumors and clots cause waves of inhibition to spread to all parts of the corpus callosum . this could mean that a normal person with a dominant left brain may exhibit behavior similar to a split brain person with a partially damaged right brain . ‘the cerebral hemispheres totally integrate if but a small fraction of the corpus callosum remains intact . It may also be initiated psychologically through thought processes and communications between the left and right brain selves — resulting in one side being dominant . it has also been found that even in a healthy corpus callosum only certain types of information can be carried . dr H G Gordon. The shocked nerve fibers simply do not carry impulses from one side of the brain to the other . Unsuspected Connections and Disconnections Until recently it was believed that the entire corpus callosum must be severed to provide relief from severe epileptic seizures . Hence. Split-brains can be initiated both physically and chemically . However this is not necessarily the case — the corpus callosum only needs to be severed enough to provide relief. Only the circuit connected to the language centre seems to result in conscious awareness .’ On the other hand. logically. furthermore. the right brain functions do not enter into consciousness directly since it is not connected to the (conscious) left brain . Plasticity of the Brain The brain is fairly plastic and can accommodate different types of processing if it was organised differently physically — for example if there was significant damage to one hemisphere of the brain . Complicated higher level information cannot pass through from one brain to the other . One of Michael Gazzaniga’s 8 . it should be noted that the two brains can speak to each other on another level that does not require the corpus callosum . However. without losing all neural integration . tumors or blood clots pressing on only part of an intact corpus callosum can cause full-blown Jekyll/Hyde reactions (similar to split-brain patients) . also found that a connection at the back of the brain alone is enough to integrate both human minds . in split-brain patients.jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS split-brain experiments show that if the two hemispheres are not connected into a single circuit — that is. They can also speak to each other via the limbic system (through the thalamus and hypothalamus) and the autonomic nervous system .

may be handled by the right brain. The body and possibly the other side of the brain are experienced as being the exterior environment and subsequently modeled as such in the right brain . the right brain specializations develop to their fullest when informed by a fully developed left side . The right side may perceive the left side as partially exterior to the organism. The remaining cortex takes over the functions once provided by the removed cortex . for optimal functioning. certain resources in the left brain are freely available to the right brain and vice versa . If the removal occurs later in life.24 In other words. Co-operative processing and sharing of resources must be borne in mind when talking about the dichotomy of tasks between the right and left brains . a complicated region of the environment whose rules the right side will attempt to acquire . disconnected hemisphere .25 according to him. Children who have undergone brain removal at an early age develop more or less normally . The left side may model the right as part of its own organisation . Left-Handed People The brain organization of left-handed people is often different from that of right-handed people . Migration of Skills from Right to Left Brain over Time It has been noted that while novel skills. There are also cases involving children. Ornstein believes that the two major functions of the human mental system need to stay within the range of equilibrium . where one cerebral hemisphere was removed . 9 . this sort of compensation does not occur . Otherwise we get ‘form without content . however.rIGHT VS lefT Br aIN | Chapter 1 patients developed the capacity to speak out of the right brain 13 years after the brain surgery .’ Shared Resources and Services In the 1980s Jeffrey Holtzman of Cornell University Medical College found that each hemisphere is able to direct spatial attention not only to its own sensory sphere but also to certain points in the sensory sphere of the opposite. the skills and knowledge tend to migrate to the left brain over time — thus.’ Both sides of the brain most likely incorporate the other side into their models of the world . such as playing a musical instrument for the first time. The two brains therefore use the other brain for certain parts of the processes that are initiated and concluded in the other brain . inhibiting the creativity initially exhibited — this may also be the basis of ‘beginners’ luck . This could include a reversed brain organisation or both brains with both language and spatial abilities .

connecting the right and left brains. is composed of white matter . Women are therefore superior in their capacity to communicate between the different modes of perceiving and relating to the world.jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS Sex Differences researchers at the University of Pennsylvania Medical Centre have recently reported that.27 10 . The corpus callosum. however. Studies also show that women have a thicker corpus callosum. which is composed of white matter. relative to cranial volume. women’s brains have a higher proportion of gray matter (which facilitates computations) while men have a higher proportion of white matter (which facilitates communication between groups of cells in different areas of the brain) . according to Kristine Hoeldtke . allowing them to integrate their right and left brains better .

analytical or discriminating mind . to the intuitive mind versus the rational. The intuitive mind. according to this Sutra. in philosophy. before the localisation or lateralisation of certain brain processes were discovered.’ which have unmistakable similarities to the attributes given to the left and right brains. an age-old Mahayanist scripture. is the wise jester who travels with the magician and reflects upon his emptiness and transience — an observer. respectively . albert einstein 1 We are now used to hearing about ‘right brain’ and ‘left brain’ processes . The lankavatara Sutra. religion and psychology. there were many references. However. 11 . The discriminating mind is portrayed as a dancer and a magician with the objective world as his stage . We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift .CHaPTer 2 Intuitive versus discriminating (rational) Mind The intuitive mind is a sacred gift and the rational mind is a faithful servant . it is because of the discriminating mind (which is also called the thinking or intellectual mind) that an objective world evolves . speaks of a ‘discriminating mind’ and an ‘intuitive mind. however.

enlightened persons discard the use of their thinking minds . according to this Sutra. which includes within it the smaller sphere of the conscious (the discriminating mind) because everything conscious has an unconscious preliminary stage . they are perfectly intelligent because they apprehend knowledge.’ according to this Sutra. the Sutra says.’ The intuitive mind.e . it is ‘self-enlightening . the cessation of the discriminating mind cannot take place until there has been a ‘turning-about’ in the deepest seat of consciousness . the intuitive mind is non-local (as it expands into the ‘universal mind’) . Nirvana.’ The true essence of our consciousness is our ‘enlightened intuition . 3 does this allude to a turning about from the left brain to the right brain? The Surangama Sutra. The discriminating mind has been accused of ‘defiling’ the face of universal mind — forcing the universal mind to play a variety of parts as actors . describes something similar — it identifies both a ‘thinking mind’ and an ‘intuitive mind . abides in tranquility permeating everywhere throughout the phenomenal worlds and universes. Consequentially. The intuitive mind sits between the universal mind and the individual’s discriminating mind . It is like a great ocean. according to this Sutra. the universal mind transcends all individuation and limits. even then. is achieved by ‘getting rid of the discriminating mind . the right brain) is perceived as unconscious or a ‘black box’ by the thinking mind (normally associated with the dominant left brain) . according to this Sutra. but directly by intuition . 12 . another age-old Mahayanist scripture. It is with the ‘attainment of the essential intuitive mind’ that the intuitive mind’s enlightening nature is known . 2 This is consistent with the statement by def Jehning that the unconscious (which comprises the intuitive and universal mind) is the larger sphere.jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS The intuitive mind (now associated with the non-dominant right brain) partakes of the universality of a ‘universal mind’ and is one with this universal (non-local) mind by reason of its participation in ‘transcendental intelligence’ and at the same time is one with the mind-system (the local mind) by its comprehension of differentiated knowledge (generated by the discriminating mind) .4 In other words. the universal mind has become the storage and clearing house of all the accumulated mental products and actions of the various actors . and is devoid of personality . you need to experience the workings of the intuitive mind to know of its mysterious intelligence because unlike analytical thinking the thought processes cannot be traced — it (i . ‘not by means of their thinking minds.’ This wonderful intuition. Hence. is not enlightened by something else.’ However. its surface ruffled by waves and surges caused by the activities of the discriminating mind .

. then all such phenomena as sight. Divided and Indivisible Realities Matte Blanco. all such phenomena also disappear . a renowned psychologist. Taking these manifestations of the mind as being real we go on discriminating them and cherishing the dualism of ‘this’ (i . has no reality in itself and is like a dream . physical sense perception is by its very nature limited . The multiplicity of objects. the Sutra says.e . its complementary attribute) . says this Sutra. intrinsic perception possesses no differentials (in other words no complementary pairs of attributes are discerned) . and as soon as this consciousness disappears. Over time.’ 13 . so perfectly universalized will your mind become that ‘even at the point of a single hair all the kingdoms of the universe will be seen .e . according to the Surangama Sutra. sentient beings have been led astray by mistaking the nature of their mind to be the same as the nature of any other object . however. Though there may be all degrees of illumination between brightness and darkness. motion etc . it is an illusive manifestation developed by our sensory systems . space. It says that the objective world arises from the mind itself . prior to any division by discriminating consciousness) .e divergent awareness) appears. This discriminating consciousness has ‘no originality of its own. If you learn to see things by your true mind.’ in other words it is derivative. according to def Jehning. Objects and the world neither exist nor do not exist — it depends on your frame of reference . freud’s ‘true psychic reality’ comes pretty close to what Blanco would describe as our ‘second mode of being’ — what he calls ‘Indivisible reality . It is not until discrimination is gotten rid of that the fact that ‘all things are empty.’ 5 We must be careful to distinguish between the perception of our eyes and the intrinsic perception of sight by our enlightened mind that is conscious of the fallible perception of the eyes . Their minds became bewildered by outer objects and the perception of their sight changed to conform to the dimensions of its visual field and to become limited strictly according to outer conditions . an attribute) and ‘that’ (i . the Sutra says . describes two antagonizing modes of being: a dividing one (the splitting and polarizing logic of our discriminating consciousness) and an indivisible one (reality as it is. will be manifested.INTUITIVe VS dISCrIMINaTING (r aTIONal) MINd | Chapter 2 The Intuitive Mind’s Perception according to the Surangama Sutra. unborn and without independent existence’ can be appreciated . as soon as consciousness (i . In ignorance things are perceived and in perfect knowledge they are not perceived.

e .’ The operation of subtraction is not commutative — the order is important . Logic of the Unconscious Symmetric logic basically equates an attribute or property with its contrary or anti-property. the higher the degree of symmetry . a and B. The operation of the logic would therefore be described as ‘commutative . the conscious left brain) works within a framework of timelessness and spacelessness (i . within the environment of the intuitive right brain and the ‘universal mind’) . the ordinary concepts of cause and effect. appositional. To use mathematical terminology. according to Blanco . relations within the unconscious are symmetrical. Blanco also noted that the ‘unconscious’ was timeless.6 Using this logic. ‘1 — 2’ is not equal to ‘2 — 1 .jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS Symmetric Logic of the ‘Unconscious’ Right Brain Unconscious thought operates with a systematic logical structure of its own . they remain true when they are inverted .e . psychoanalysts have tended to focus on various detail aspects of freud’s work while disregarding the fundamental and disturbing implications of the idea that the mind (in this context.7 It will be immediately noticed that all the attributes of the unconscious described by Blanco are identical to the characteristics of the right brain noted in various experiments cited previously . Blanco distinguished different ‘strata’ in the mind — the ‘deeper’ the unconscious. The order of the events is not important in symmetric logic . We are confronted with an absence of mutual contradiction and negation. time and space are over-turned . the more symmetrical it becomes . at the ‘surface’ there is a mixture of asymmetric and symmetric logic (i . In other words. uses symbols and imagery. the operation of addition is commutative . On the other hand.’ for example. they are ‘commutative . Unconscious thinking unites or unifies things which for ‘ordinary thinking’ are distinct and separated . according to Jehning. then B is before a . it has its own internal logic — which is different from the logic used by consciousness . In other words. 14 . both commutative and non-commutative operations apply) but the ‘deeper’ you go into the unconscious.’ The ‘unconscious’ is characterised by an increasing prevalence of symmetry . and timelessness . 1 + 2 = 2 + 1 . unable to distinguish between hard and fluid reality (or fantasy) and between the part and the whole. in other words yin = yang . It uses symmetric logic. placeless. symmetric logic allows you to say that if a is before B. for instance: ‘Mary is different from Clara. If there are two events.’ or ‘a is identical to B’. and uses a combination of symmetric and asymmetric logic . in the arithmetic operation of addition.

’ 15 . classes are dissolved into increasingly larger wholes. another thing.INTUITIVe VS dISCrIMINaTING (r aTIONal) MINd | Chapter 2 Experiencing Superspace in Our Minds In supersymmetry theory (in modern physics) there are two sets of four dimensions . from the University of Pennsylvania. reality is split into opposites . it is ‘non-commutative .9 Neuroscientists. it is very hard to visualise this geometrically because we have no direct conscious experience of non-commutative geometry . The (Mahayanist) lankavatara Sutra claims that the intuitive mind partakes of the ‘universal mind’ — which is often described in the Sutra as a ‘perfect unity’ — also implying an absence of spacetime . The ordinary ‘logical’ thinking activity is constantly dealing with combinations of triads: it recognises and makes propositions to itself about one thing. Most of these relations are asymmetrical.’ according to physicists.8 This can be understood when we reflect on a particle and its entangled anti-correlated particle . However.’ or ‘a is part of B’. constitute what is called ‘superspace . In quantum physics. The One according to Blanco. and the relation between those two things . the converse order of such relations is not identical to it i . eugene d’aquili and andrew Newberg.e . Matte-Blanco views the mind as a dynamic discriminator and classifier . in symmetric logic the part and the whole are interchangeable. its anti-correlated particle instantaneously changes in a converse way — even if it was on the other side of the galaxy . we should not be surprised if superspace is experienced as part of our deeper unconscious and in dreams . considering that the unconscious (according to Blanco) uses a combination of symmetric commutative logic and asymmetric noncommutative logic. The two sets of dimensions.10 Effect of the Discriminating Mind on the One dehning argues that because of discrimination. we know that when the particle is disturbed in a certain way. when combined. for instance: ‘Simon is the father of david. One set is commutative and the other set non-commutative . have asserted that there is a final mystical experience common to humanity that they call the experience of absolute unitary being . every second the human mind is classifying things into categories . It is as if the particle and its anti-correlated particle were a single entity even though they may be a galaxy or light years apart . This implies that spacetime is an illusion . until we arrive at ‘indivisible reality’: here the infinity of things is in a mysterious way reduced to one single thing .

jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS This discriminating consciousness is a typical human phenomenon . relations do exist in the indivisible reality.12 There are. beyond the dividing categories of discriminating consciousness . called the amygdala. To some extent then. we try to cement the countless cracks in indivisible reality that our discriminating consciousness caused . cognitive. ‘Good’ and ‘Bad’ ledoux showed that mammalian brains are arranged so that incoming sensory information collected at the thalamus goes through the lower brain structure in the limbic system. renders initial good/ bad. “friend or foe?” — This is the question to which our discriminating consciousness unremittingly tries to find an answer . By its splitting action. ‘But I am convinced that it deeply influences our being-in-the-world . first before reaching the neocortex — long considered the seat of conscious. intuitive judgment first. therefore. each brain hemisphere. Consequently the subject is left with an ever-growing number of things . followed only afterwards by slower. however.’ Thus our asymmetric discriminating consciousness divides indivisible reality . discriminating consciousness fragments reality . There is a human need to try to retrieve some form of direct contact with indivisible reality. one inside the left brain and the other inside the right brain . to make them fit into our well-known discriminating — and reductive — schemes . which is strongly associated with emotion. indivisible reality is like a living body — remove a part of it and the part dies . some “discriminating” question pops up and disturbs our general impression . has its own amygdala switch . can be overridden by the neocortex’s cognitive processing .’ says dehning . Whenever we try to listen to a piece of music. two amygdalae in your brain. according to Blanco. This initial response. to contemplate a landscape or a work of art. for the adult mind it is generally very difficult to suspend the discrimi16 . approach/avoid responses and triggers an autonomic response when it perceives a threat . Our discriminating consciousness automatically compels us to discriminate and classify these perceptions . ‘I do not know how and why it came into being. By establishing relations between different elements in our minds.11 antonio damasio believes that the human brain seems to have evolved to favor quick. cognitive reasoning . but these ‘relations’ are different from the asymmetric relations we are familiar with . in fact. conscious processing . This crumbling cascades in a never-ending process (of symmetry breaking) . We cannot represent them: in order to do so we would have to asymmetrise them. The amygdala. What was originally one and indivisible falls apart into a plethora of elements that extrapolates infinitely .

inclusive to the brain and body that houses it .INTUITIVe VS dISCrIMINaTING (r aTIONal) MINd | Chapter 2 nating activity of consciousness. holistic .’ Psychologists say that the intuitive aspect of thinking appears to be evolutionarily older and more established than the analytical aspect . Many mammals demonstrate experience-based emotionally-related judgments. Platform dependent — i .’ Process is generally inaccessible.e . Process is unintentional and is automatically cued . thought is metaphorical. Symbol manipulation. Unique to humans over age 2 and perhaps some language-trained apes . experiences can be easily communicated to others . dehning says . This evidences an absence of personal ‘will . Dual Process Models Whether we describe it as right vs . Process is intentional and is consciously controlled — an exercise of ‘free will . In other words. left brain. human infants clearly develop their ability to make experience-based emotionally-related judgments well before they develop analytical abilities . thought is truth preserving.13 Unconscious Intuitive Thinking fast and effortless . Context independent . The information is ‘portable . we are talking about dual-process models . Common to all mammals .14 In addition.’ entire process can be controlled and viewed in consciousness . intuitive mind. Conscious Analytical Thinking Slow and effortful . meditation may provide a condition in which this pre-conscious awareness can be recovered. dual process models of human thinking are becoming more widely accepted in contemporary mainstream psychology . discriminating vs . Here is a summary of differences between intuitive and analytical thinking . and to be just aware. but few if any demonstrate analytical reasoning like humans . Context dependent . intuitive mind or thinking/analytical/rational vs . analytical . Platform independent — processes can be transmitted to other rule following organisms or machines . only results show up consciously .15 In evolutionary terms analytical thinking appears to be still in a rel17 . Pattern matching.

then. it might be more accurate to refer to intuitive thinking processes as ‘superconscious…because they govern conscious processes without appearing in them .’17 18 .16 While the words used in the dual process models imply that intuitive thinking is unconscious. this may not be completely accurate . according to Guidano. may be the default style of human learning .jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS atively embryonic stage of development compared to intuitive thinking . Intuitive learning. as compared with the conscious.

I work with it and rely on it . does the answer saunter into our minds as carelessly as if it had never been called for — suggested possibly by the flowers on the bonnet of the lady in front of us. walking in the street with our attention miles away from the quest.’ In fact. some day. Intuitive ‘Unconscious’ Ian Wilson says that it is a well-attested fact that a remarkable number of the world’s distinguished scientists and mathematicians have made their inventive discoveries or solved some scientific problems in mental states that do not seem to have been normal. verbalizing consciousness (normally associated with the dominant left brain) .CHaPTer 3 The Intelligent. why did she not 19 . the virologist who discovered the first vaccine against poliomyelitis says. or possibly by nothing that we can discover? If reason can give us relief then. dr Jonas Salk. but all in vain — thought refusing to evolve the solution we desire? and why. Webster’s dictionary defines intuition as ‘quick and ready insight.] The Unconscious Problem Solver William James asks: ‘Why do we spend years straining after a certain scientific or practical problem. like gifts from the sea . ‘It is always with excitement that I wake up in the morning wondering what my intuition will toss up to me. It’s my partner .’ [emphasis added . immediate apprehension or cognition or the power or faculty of attaining to direct knowledge or cognition without evident rational thought and inference .

the novelist. without any effort on his part. There are many cases in history to illustrate this . which until shortly before his time was thought to be prime by mathematicians . labouriously calculated on paper that it was divisible by 641 . In a letter to a french scientific journal in 1886. like a sudden flash of lightning. nothing good is accomplished at the first attack . Before and after.297. referring to an arithmetic theorem. as an example. the proof of which eluded him for years.’2 The ‘Unconscious’ Calculator enid Blyton. during the first half-hour.jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS do so sooner?’1 Henri Poincare. the book ends almost to the word . ‘Two days ago. One of the most spectacular feats related to the number 4. renowned physicist. Then one takes a long rest and sits down anew to the work .’ This sequence of events is not only evident in scientific quests — similar descriptions are found in religious quests — for example. was given the same problem he swiftly arrived at 641 ‘by the mere operation of his mind . the young Zerah began giving public demonstrations of his mathematical skills . I succeeded. the famous mathematician. the riddle happened to be solved . let’s look at Zerah Colburn . says that the appearances of sudden illuminations are obvious indications of a long course of previous unconscious work . leonhard euler. Gauss writes. ignorant of all this. In religion. admitted that often his ideas arrived suddenly. nothing is found.000 words long’ and sure enough. The unconscious appears to possess mind-boggling computational power . Gauss described how a solution came to him for an arithmetical theorem that he had spent years trying to prove — like a sudden flash of lightning the riddle happened to be solved . as before. but by the grace of God .294. He sometimes had to devise explanations for deductions that came to him in a flash of intuition . says that she receives directions from what she terms her ‘undermind’ that ‘the story must be 40. Zerah Colburn was born in 1804. and then all of a sudden the decisive idea presents itself to the mind . When only six.’ The really significant feature about Colburn is that he was totally 20 . it may be described as ‘insight’. Helmholtz. while taking easy walks over wooded hills in sunny weather . USa . in scientific circles it may be described as creativity . the son of a farmer of Vermont. says. Henri Poincare. as described by (Saint) Theresa of avila or (Saint) John of the Cross .967. but in between was some mysterious process . ‘Often when one works at a hard question. one of the greatest mathematicians in history. Physicist lord Kelvin reported receiving inspiration in similar ways . not yet able to read or write. not on account of my painful efforts. when talking about the creative process. there had to be controlled conscious work. When Colburn.

Tchaikovsky. everything was done in his head. ‘the entire musical. the creativity and the computational power diminishes.THe INTellIGeNT INTUITIVe ‘UNCONSCIOUS’ | Chapter 3 unable to explain how he had reached his conclusion . Kaiser noted that novel skills. Madame Butterfly. Measure by measure the finished product is revealed to him . 3 Brain Drain Truman Stafford could calculate in his head in 60 seconds a multiplication sum whose answer consisted of 36 figures. the composer. However. where he literally saw the computation form up clearly and effortlessly before him . The ‘Unconscious’ Idea Generator The great russian composer. He says. such as music. one thought follows another . when only 10 years old . and could not even perform the simplest multiplication and division sums on paper . It seemed to him that he ‘was dictated to by two wholly different Omnipotent entities …and was conscious of being aided by more than an earthly Power . harmonies. he lost this mental gift . everything within starts pulsing and quivering.’ This echoes the view that normal people with intact brains have experiences which make them feel as if they had more than one mind or one 21 . Similarly. although being a calculating genius in early childhood lost the ability after undertaking formal education . Having never had formal education. richard Whately. says that the germ of a future composition comes to him suddenly and unexpectedly . was ‘dictated’ to him by God . when the skills do migrate to the left brain. measure by measure’ followed . which are processed initially in the right brain. a nineteenth century archbishop of dublin. However.’ richard Strauss. when he went on to a professional career in mathematics. He says. and orchestration .’ Brahms told one biographer that when the inspirations for his most famous compositions came to him ‘they are clothed in the right forms. also says that when the ideas flowed in him. ‘I forget everything and behave like a mad man. ‘I was merely instrumental in putting it on paper and communicating it to the public . He says that the music of the opera. perhaps because direct access to the universal mind (via the intuitive right brain) diminishes significantly . Why is this so? david Kaiser offers a clue . migrate over (after extensive practice) to the left brain .’ He describes this as a magic process which occurs to him when he is in a ‘somnambulistic state . he was entirely ignorant of elementary mathematical rules. This has been noted in lesion and eeG studies 4 Over-practicing skills enables an individual to learn how to model exterior rules (of the right brain) in the more confidently controlled domain of interior rules (of the left brain) .’ Puccini described in similar terms .

By the age of 10. one of the founding fathers of quantum physics. ‘Inner listening’ is the term that is often used when the creative ideas output from what seems to be another person . and that she felt her own personality to be ‘merely the instrument through which this spirit. near Madras. The laboratory procedure for producing insulin on a mass basis was discovered in a dream by Sir frederick Banting . In many of the experiences the communication even seems to come in the form of an audible voice . Niels Bohr. The ideas generated in dreams can therefore be attributed largely to the right brain . hoping for contact with other mathematical minds . The left brain often views the right brain which is delivering the solutions as another mind or person — which is not far from the truth — as evidenced in experiences of split-brain patients . was acting . The German poet Goethe reported that he wrote his first novel. which led to the ‘Bohr model’ of atomic structure and a Nobel Prize . he had already derived euler’s identity between trigonometric functions and exponentials . like a somnambulist. 22 . When the right brain intervenes. He then mailed some of the results to his ‘dreams’ to three well-known mathematicians.jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS person in their bodies — like split-brain patients . we normally only hear the vocal left brain talking . Godfrey Hardy . something that was ‘not herself’ took possession of her. using the left brain’s speech centres. Ramanujan Srinivasa ramanujan was born in India. Werther. George elliot told J W Cross that in all of what she considered her best writings. dreamt of a planetary system as a model for atoms. it became clear that ramanujan was not like the other children . in 1887 . The illusion of a unitary self is caused by the fact that.’ and was amazed when he realised what he had done . we attribute the messages to ‘another person . On reading the letter. The most popular song in history ‘yesterday’ was received by Beatle Paul McCartney in a dream — chords and melody . he worked as a junior clerk in the Port Trust of Madras . went to the laboratory later and performed the experiment and generated the results of the theory of chemical transmission of nervous impulse which won him the 1936 Nobel Prize in Physiology and Medicine . The letter contained 120 theorems totally unknown to Western mathematicians . One was received by the brilliant Cambridge mathematician. ‘almost unconsciously. after receiving little formal education. Otto loewi dreamt the design of an experiment. as a child. for most of the day. as it were.’ Dream Solutions We know that the right brain takes over when we are in a dream state .

the more quickly and effectively the unconscious can come up with an answer to it . Our local (discriminating) mind cannot fathom the processes that go on in the universal mind-brain . Working in total isolation from the main currents of his field. ‘He had such a feel for things that they just flowed out of his brain . Hardy noted. In terms of mathematical skills. On the spot. Hardy later rated ramanujan even higher than david Hilbert. In dreams.’ ramanujan used to say that the goddess of Namakkal inspired him with the formulae in dreams . can contain errors . universally recognised as one of the greatest Western mathematician of the nineteenth century . This gives us an interesting insight into the nature of unconscious processing — it works like a quantum supercomputer using a different type of logic . The intuitive mind is frequently associated with a universal mind in metaphysical and religious literature . ‘It seemed ridiculous to worry him about how he had found this or that known theorem. He came to the conclusion that it could only be written by a mathematician of the highest class . errors in formulating the question or in the information supplied will generate solutions tainted with these errors . right brain activity is evident . neither Hardy nor ramanujan were interested in the thinking process by which ramanujan discovered these incredible theorems. To avoid a 23 . One interesting aspect of ramanujan’s powers is that he often took hours or even months to labouriously verify and prove what he often received in an instant. he was able to rederive 100 years’ worth of Western mathematics on his own . ramanujan could recite complex theorems in arithmetic that would require a computer to prove . completely and intently you formulate a question and direct it to the unconscious. when he was showing me half a dozen new ones almost every day . a sloppy question would generate a halfbaked solution: garbage-in garbage-out . The Method Garbage-in Garbage-out The more clearly. It does not in itself have any content. just as ideas derived from deliberate conscious thinking. Unfortunately.’5 We know that the left brain is active for most of the day and when we go to sleep. Jonathan Borwein says.THe INTellIGeNT INTUITIVe ‘UNCONSCIOUS’ | Chapter 3 Hardy was stunned . activity shifts to the right brain . but it links up with content (even non-local content) when required to solve a problem . He kept a note pad next to his bed to write down the formulae that he claimed were revealed to him in dreams . and that sometimes his insight turned out to be wrong! Ideas arrived at by intuition. especially when these theorems came pouring out of his ‘dreams’ with such frequency .

takes place in a pleasing lively dream . but also mystics and highly influential religious figureheads like Siddhartha Gautama (the Buddha) who had intently searched for the ‘truth’ for six years. He goes on to write that. elias Howe worked intensely for several years on a scheme to invent a ‘lockstitch’ sewing machine and eventually succeeded after he had a nightmare which suggested the solution and the modern ‘sewing machine’ was born . at a glance . Intent The strength of our intent affects the priority the intelligent unconscious assigns to a problem . as a result of a consciously initiated process. unconscious work . it treats it as a black box .’ but to ‘drift’ in a reverie . musicians and artists. as a whole.’ he says . I know not. Scientific and Religious Use of Unconscious Processing This unconscious processing of questions generated by the conscious mind has been applied not only by scientists. said that ‘the appearance of sudden illumination was a manifest sign of long. and the whole. Henri Poincare. my subject enlarges itself. from out of literally nowhere (the unconscious is ‘placeless’ and ‘timeless’) in the form of a religious illumination. determined concentrated thought is a tremendous force…’ Hence. amadeus Mozart wrote that it was on occasions when he was entirely alone and of ‘good cheer’ that his ideas flowed best and most abundantly . though it be long. Is this unconscious processing going on in the universal mind-brain? This question will be explored in a later chapter. like a fine picture or a beautiful statue. a scientific understanding . all this inventing. this producing. a mysterious process produces the solution to our problem in a flash. so that I can survey it. a literary image. ‘Whence and how they come. using very well-defined questions . The higher the priority the larger the area freed up in the mind to process the question . stands almost complete and finished in my mind. operates as a supercomputer . we all experience trance states everyday — the time just before falling asleep and the time just before waking-up . …provided I am not disturbed.’ rudyard Kipling agreed that the key to gaining help from this inner helper was ‘not to think consciously. ‘…an ardent desire and fixed purpose combined with intense inner resolve brings results . a strong intent is important in obtaining a creative solution .’ Strauss says. including to what extent scientists believe that the universe. becomes methodized and defined. although trance states are commonly associated with yogis and hypnotists.jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS cognitive overload. These are called the ‘hypnogogic’ and ‘hypnopompic’ 24 . in an essay on mathematical creativity.

not thinking — simply bearing in mind what it is that one needs to know . Hence. Since intuitions can be wrong because of incorrect or incomplete input. declares that ‘to arrive at the simplest truth. not calculating.7 It is obvious that these steps are very similar to that adopted in meditative techniques . Intuitive-dominate people often do not test their intuitions . they open themselves to making mistakes . not making an effort. based on research. The basic steps. and testing . to train individuals to improve their intuitive abilities . seem to be quieting (or stilling) the mind. not reading. The philosopher and mathematician. not reasoning.’ There are many examples already given in this chapter .’ 6 Reducing Errors in the Intuitive Process Intuition must not be confused with sloppy analytical thinking — which may be the result of faulty logic or misperceptions . The ideas that bubble-up into consciousness must be examined using direct observation. logic. according to Shirley d and langan-fox J. and since these people can feel absolute certainty of their correctness. according to them. errors will occur in unconscious processing if the process itself is not administered properly . Visual Stories Intuition often draws on visual and other forms of imagery to communicate its output in the form of ‘stories . respectively. They may operate as though their intuitions are the absolute truth . requires years of contemplation . and adopting a non-judgmental receptive attitude which allows intuitive thoughts to enter consciousness without interference . Symbols can communicate 25 . it is possible.THe INTellIGeNT INTUITIVe ‘UNCONSCIOUS’ | Chapter 3 states. by psychologists . data collection is vital to the intuitive process . Not activity. as Newton did. George Spencer Brown. both pre and postprocessing verification must be undertaken . both input and output must be verified by the conscious. But as noted earlier this data must be verified before submitting it to the unconscious . learning to focus attention. Visual output seems more appropriate to the type of (symmetric) logic the unconscious uses and to convey a large amount of information efficiently to the conscious . Meditative ‘insight’ and creative insights in Science and the arts basically involve the same processes . Kekule first discovered that the carbon atoms of the benzene molecule linked up into a ring through watching the flames of fire transform themselves in his mind’s eye into snakes that turned round and bit their own tails . just as the conscious use of logic requires . not talking. Intuition is not always correct because the initial data supplied may be inaccurate or incomplete . additional data collection. Intuition requires data to work with.

are found to be initiated unconsciously before an awareness of wanting to act . not a cause . Nevertheless. we may begin to react to a stimulus even before we are consciously aware of it . we can consciously ‘veto’ any decision made unconsciously .jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS ideas which may sound hopelessly self-contradictory if verbalized — take the Taoist yin-yang symbol which represents the ‘interdependence of opposites. It has been found that the experience of ‘will’ occurs mainly when the idea occurs before the act . The thoughts that we attach to our actions are not necessarily the true causes of the actions. Conscious Will daniel Wegner says that conscious will is an experience. according to daniel Wegner. conscious ‘free will’ may be an illusion . The sluggishness of consciousness becomes apparent when people do things fast . The approach is a more labourious process but has the advantage of generating information that can be easily communicated to other persons. It appears that the experience of will occurs through a system that presents the idea of a voluntary action to consciousness and also produces the action . says def Jehning . suggests that much of what we see and do involves the operation of preconscious mental processes i .10 26 . but they also take more time . The idea can occur before or after the action . Role of Conscious Analytical Thinking The growing realisation in modern physics that we live in a multidimensional multiverse forces us to a radical revision of the alleged superiority of consciousness.8 Our Sluggish Consciousness When actions are forced to be fast. consciousness is perpetually late . which appear to be initiated by free will consciously. The slowness of consciousness. since much of what we do seems to surface from unconscious causes.e . unlike intuitive judgments — which appear to come out from a black box .’ for example . Benjamin libet’s experiments reveal that all conscious awareness is preceded by unconscious processes . We are therefore forced to conclude that unconscious processes initiate our conscious experiences . It typically takes only 100 milliseconds to react to a stimulus but it may take up to 500 milliseconds to become conscious of having responded . This ‘parts-to-whole’ analytical approach of analytical consciousness must necessarily circumambulate around the subject .9 Conscious processes are more flexible and strategic. and their causal connections is something we ascribe to them . When people are forced to act rapidly it usually occurs after . according to daniel Wegner. apparently voluntary acts.

cognitive thought . not the thinking process itself. perhaps that they oppose abortion. we should start with the whole . The time interval before and after the action in libet’s study indicates that consciousness pops in and out of the picture and does not really seem to be doing anything .11 What appears as cognitive reasoning may be more accurately described as a rationalization after the event . ‘…all knowledge is either tacit or rooted in tacit knowledge . Nisbett and Wilson asks. what part then does conscious analytical thinking actually play? It may be that the result of a thinking process.12 for example. participants in a dialogue may each state a position.THe INTellIGeNT INTUITIVe ‘UNCONSCIOUS’ | Chapter 3 Consciousness and action seem to play a cat-and-mouse game over time . like a lawyer. But even when a skillful and learned opponent defeats every single one of these arguments. He says we must turn physics around — instead of starting with parts and showing how they work together. although we may be conscious of a series of actions before they are performed. The many examples cited above and elsewhere show that intuition is as important to Science as it is to religion .’14 Contributions of the Right Brain to Science david Bohm says we must change the orientation of physics . assuming for the moment that unconscious intuitive thinking is indeed our primary system of thinking. a wholly explicit knowledge is unthinkable . 27 .13 Polanyi says. yet it is evident that without intuitive and holistic processing by the right brain. Science could not have developed . is what manifests as a conscious. the protagonist may concede defeat. justifying their position . What appeared to be an accurate cognitive explanation of the protagonist’s reasoning was in fact a justification (after the event) of an intuitive judgment — made without knowing exactly how or why . and then proceed to explain cognitive arguments. Why? It is probably because our position on the issue was not a result of cognitive reasoning in the first place — it was an intuitive judgment . but rarely changes his mind . it is as though the conscious mind then slips out of touch .

einstein’s theory of special relativity came from a wish to reconcile two outstanding theories of the day.CHaPTer 4 Complementary Thinking & feeling every major advance in our understanding of the nature of the universe has been preceded by a contradiction . Quantum field theory came from an effort to reconcile non-relativistic quantum mechanics with special relativity . ron Cowen. edward Witten. quoting andrew Strominger (Harvard University). 2004 1 Through out the nineteenth century and the early part of the twentieth century physicists were fiercely debating whether light was essentially a particle or a wavelike phenomenon . ‘The peculiar thing about this debate was that both sides could produce sound mathematics and experiments that the other side couldn’t explain. namely Maxwell’s theory of electricity and Newtonian gravity . notes that history teaches us that reconciling incompatibilities between theories is a good way to make really fundamental progress . but neither side was able to disprove the opposing point of view . The most far reaching advances in the twentieth century have come about 28 .’2 When Niels Bohr introduced the principle of complementarity early in the twentieth century. it was one of the early recognitions that reality is too rich to be adequately represented by any one model or paradigm . Physicist. Harman and rheingold noted that.

The certainty of einstein’s ‘block universe. ‘The world must suffer under the pairs of opposites forever . every major part of Physics conflicts with the other at a fundamental level .’ Hegelian Cycles — Knowledge breeding Knowledge Sure. ‘Without contraries. We will never reach the target — only circumambulate around it . there is no progression .’ each hegelian cycle consists of a ‘propositional state’ in which a thesis is formed and established . The timesymmetric theories of both relativity and Quantum Physics conflict with the time-asymmetric theories of Chaos and Complexity theories . the left brain had been described as ‘propositional . they are mutually dependent . Sure. and another one. Taking a positive approach. The opposite of a great truth is another great truth .’ and so it is that students are taught to criticize . Taking a negative approach. david Peat. In fact.’ derived from relativity theory. Tom Siegfried. they appear to be complementary theories . an electron is real. but is it a wave or a particle? That depends on what sort of experiment you design to detect it . einstein extended Newton’s theories. But it’s not the only theory that works well. On the one hand. but what does it look like? That depends on whether you view it from the front or the back . Physicist 4 Science appears to be subject to ‘hegelian cycles .’ ) Then sooner or later it is confronted by a complementary antithesis — another 29 . yet on the other. (If you remember.COMPleMeNTary THINKING & feelING | Chapter 4 because previous theories weren’t compatible with one another . in some cases might work better. we could be dismayed that there will never be one solution . even though at other times it works worse . for with the contrary view comes progress — a resizing of knowledge . who in turn extended Galileo’s and Kepler’s theories . Nevertheless. William Blake states. a house is real. we may say that the antithesis is merely a device to enlarge the thesis so that it is able to explain and predict observed events more accurately . Sure. Physicist 3 each thesis appears to be destined to meet its contra or antithesis (its mirror image) in time . relativity and quantum theory are irreconcilable. conflicts with the uncertainty in quantum physics . your theory of the universe works pretty well . The ramayana (a Hindu scripture) says.

The thesis and the antithesis then form specific limiting cases of the transthesis . from the department of Cognitive and Neural Systems of Boston University. If the thesis represents the length. which again bifurcates after a time. a simple example is when photons were thought to be waves (a propositional state — a thesis). But it is not a mere synthesis of the thesis and the antithesis . The Complementary Brain Just as in the organisation of the physical world with which it interacts. that the brain is organised to obey principles of complementarity . he says.jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS propositional state which is contrary to the thesis . 90 degrees) to it . a new thesis which reconciles and at the same time transcends the original thesis and antithesis) would then be another line orthogonal to this square — the height . then its antithesis represents the breadth — a new spatial dimension .e . In the next generation or hegelian cycle. If the thesis (length) and its antithesis (breadth) are imagined to form a square. a 30 . In fact. a review of the history of scientific thought and philosophy will reveal it moving in (what I call) hegelian cycles . Then it moves into an appositional state (a characteristic of right brain processes) which collapses into a transthesis — another propositional state — in chronological sequence . The three form a cube . then the two were considered complementary under Bohr’s complementarity theory (an appositional state) and subsequently ‘wavicles’ under de Broglie and david Bohm’s theories (a propositional state — a transthesis) . If a thesis is represented by a single line. a person with 3d awareness would be able to see the cube as a whole . Neuroscientist 6 Geometry of Knowledge let us use a geometric model to understand a hegelian cycle . the ‘transthesis’ (i .’5 Complementary aspects of the physical world are translated into complementary brain designs for coping with this world . into a thesis and its antithesis . then its conflicting and complementary antithesis would be another line which is orthogonal (i . It is a new way of looking at things . and then particles (a propositional state — the antithesis). the transthesis is identified as the thesis. a ‘transthesis’ is defined in this book as a thesis which reconciles the thesis with its antithesis . it has been proposed by Stephen Grossberg. it can be argued that ‘known complementary properties (in the brain) exist because of the need to process complementary types of information in the environment .e . Stephen Grossberg.

Paul davies. In this context. This means that there is no absolute. are beginning to be seen in Science . But ‘right brain Science’ is still in its infancy . Symmetry is broken . There are. in a sense had 1d or linear awareness — in other words it could not conceive of more than one theory to explain reality — it insisted on there only being one . Spatial intelligence includes the perception of three spatial dimensions . Science will simply become a more rigorous ‘Philosophy . but internally self-consistent theories which can explain the same empirical data and predict the same outcomes .’ With its maturation we will see more and more conflicting. the cubic space that the right brain perceives shows that the right brain will be able to accommodate at least three diverse theories. Multidimensional reality is much bigger than any particular 1d scientific or religious theory . These relative truths have utility — its predictive and explanatory value (within the context of a particular universe) . a fork on the road leaves you wondering in which direction to go . In this way. without cognitive dissonance. the right brain’s spatial intelligence is significant . you ignore the other . signs to a more right brain ‘appositional Science .’ Conflicting theories which are complementary. In the past 500 years. We go through similar cycles in our daily (non-abstract) thought processes . however. Theories are computable within their own dimensions. 2002 7 Cognitive dissonance arises primarily in the analytical left brain when confronted by two equal and opposite theses . When two conflicting theories are reconciled.’ It’s extremely unsatisfying to find two ultimate descriptions of reality when you’re looking for just one . If you cannot decide you would be at the fork forever! If you do select one. This is unpleasant to the left brain — so it tries to resolve it by ignoring one of the theses and rationalizing the choice . (Western) Science is relatively ‘young .COMPleMeNTary THINKING & feelING | Chapter 4 person with only 1d or linear awareness would see three separate lines — two conflicting lines and one reconciling line . it can get on with a plan of action . Physicist. but non-computable across dimensions . just as it is able to perceive three spatial dimensions orthogonal to each other . This could be described as ‘propositional Science . 31 . Science.’ The rigor increases its utility . which individually explain experimental data successfully. However. This will bring Science to where Philosophy is . all-encompassing truth that can be given by a 1d theory . particular scientific or religious 1d theories do convey relative truths — which are empirically or experientially testable . Unlike the constricted linear time dimension of the left brain.

they often fall into various antinomies. even Science gives contradictory answers when it reaches 32 . This was part of Kant’s critical program of determining limits to Science and philosophical inquiry . Kantian Antinomies and the Limitations of a Propositional Science antinomy. In this case. a term used in logic. antinomies are usually seen as disasters for the formal system in which they arise . Kant thought that one could reason from the assumption that the world had a beginning in time to the conclusion that it did not. and vice versa . Here.e . Siddhartha Gautama refused to answer such questions during his discourses because he knew that an ‘ultimate answer’ would be inherently contradictory . as experiential rather than theoretical attributes) in a higher-dimensional universe . each parallel universe is orthogonal (i . or equally rational but contradictory views . logical self-consistency must precede computability . Immanuel Kant believed that when the categories of understanding are carried above possible experience. for example. reason cannot play the role of establishing rational truths because it goes beyond ‘possible experience’ (as generated by the dominant left brain) . just as each face of a cube is. in reality. there would not be any privileged scientific viewpoint . In the above example. Contrafactual attributes of two contradictory lower-dimensional universes can be accepted as axiomatic (i . every parallel universe must be logically self-consistent . perceive both answers as correct. they could not be observed at the same time in the lower-dimensional universe because of cognitive dissonance — generated primarily by the analytical left brain . However. The right brain as we know is appositional . In mathematical logic. there is a state reduction in the knowledge process — from two dimensions to one dimension . it would mean that a multitude of theories would be able to explain the same empirical data . means a paradox or unresolvable contradiction . We must. There could be more than one ‘Science’ which is rigorous enough to explain and predict outcomes in a particular universe .jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS they collapse into one dimension and become computable within that dimension . and thus have a limit to our knowledge .e . just as each conflicting theory is . 90 degrees) to another. The formalism of quantum theory allows infinitely many ways to decompose the quantum state of the Universe into a superposition of orthogonal states . there appears to be something inherently wrong in asking the question ‘does the world have a beginning in time?’ We are forced to the conclusion that both answers must be true . Just as mathematical systems or any acceptable theory must be logically self-consistent. In other words. If we apply this fact to knowledge. this is a limitation in our knowledge of the universe . In a sense.

one where strings are fundamental and field lines are an approximate picture. He says physicists are excited about the possibility that two theories may be just two ways of looking at the same thing . Tom Siegfried 11 Strange Matters 33 . different points of view reveal different pictures . It seems that this move could not have come about if not for the natural ability of the right brain to be in an appositional or superposed state . The frame of reference you use depends on the frame of reference you inhabit . Physicists call this the ‘hypothesis of duality . When traditional scientific and conventional religious theories try to reconcile these contradictions they have the quality of myths . Harvard’s Cumrun Vafa says that the main lesson of recent progress in ‘string dualities’ has been the recognition of the existence of different viewpoints on a physical theory all of which are good for answering some question . Virtually all myths can be reduced to the same consistent pattern: identify a crucial existential concern.10 If that is so.’ according to him. we are told that electrons are both particles and waves — and so are all quantum objects . The different frames of relativity theory are all equally valid for describing nature . this is evidence that we are moving away from a propositional to an appositional Science — at least in modern physics .COMPleMeNTary THINKING & feelING | Chapter 4 its limits . then find a resolution that alleviates anxiety and allows us to live more happily in the world . and we organise physics based on the signature that seems most sensible from our point of view . frame it as a pair of incompatible opposites. for example. the search for an ultimate physical theory will not produce one and only one picture . In the same way. a second where the reverse is true . andrew Newberg and eugene d’ aquili 8 Move towards an Appositional Science The philosophy of Science appears to be changing . The interesting thing about these contradictions is that they are complementary and interdependent — just like the ‘yin’ and ‘yang’ of Chinese philosophy . many different spacetime signatures may turn out to be equivalent. according to Tom Siegfried. the hypothesis of duality is the acceptance that there could be two (opposing) ways of describing the same thing .9 according to lee Smolin there could be two theories.

andrew Newberg and eugene d’ aquili 15 34 . among the many problems with the realist position is the fact that ‘multiple. examples of this correspondence are now known for universes with a variety of dimensions . a collection of explanatory stories that resolve the mysteries of existence and help us cope with the challenges of life . and while the picture may make sense. New Jersey.000 years ago by Hindus and Buddhists . Igor Klebanov and alexander Polyakov of Princeton University . The limitations of knowledge generated through mainly linear analysis rather than direct experience were discussed and noted more than 2. mutually incompatible theories can often be presented that equally account for the given body of experimental evidence.jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS recently. It was later confirmed for many other universes with different numbers of dimensions by edward Witten of the Institute for advanced Study in Princeton. however.’ Bekenstein believes.13 The ‘unified theory of everything’ that Science is seeking would be really a multitude of logically irreconcilable (conflicting) theories which can only be held together in multidimensional awareness . scientists have found that two very different theories which are constructed using different numbers of space dimensions can be equivalent . in just the way that our brains construct an innate perception that our universe has three spatial dimensions . that the structures of their brains might give them an overwhelming prejudice in favor of one description or another. They rejected linear — ‘one solution’ models and were motivated to seek the ‘truth’ in more direct ways . In fact multiple hypotheses are often put forth.12 Physicist Jacob Bekenstein says that ‘creatures living in one of these universes would be incapable of determining if they inhabited a 5d universe described by string theory or a 4d one described by a quantum field theory of point particles . and the choice among them is based on human factors . Science is a type of mythology. leading to only one true theory . ‘for generations the notion that scientific theories represent objective. Juan Maldacena first conjectured such a relation11 in 1997 for a 5 dimensional universe .’ The best that Science can give us is a metaphorical picture of what’s real. Indeed there are few today who adhere to such straightforward (or naïve) scientific realism . and Steven Gubser. as Wallace puts it. In this case.’14 a philosophically unreflective approach to science gives the impression that objective reality screens out false hypotheses. independent physical reality has been seriously challenged by philosophers of science . it isn’t necessarily true .

This cyclic pattern assumes a certain anguishing monotony after man has gone through a few thousand human births. chemistry. 1946 18 according to yogananda. I believe. rise and fall. [emphasis added .’ and the idea of the twenty-first century. day and night. good and evil. ‘all who cling to the cosmic illusion must accept its essential law of polarity: flow and ebb. he begins then to cast a hopeful eye beyond the compulsions of Maya . will remain in a permanent flux. The illusory dualistic veil he wears is Maya .COMPleMeNTary THINKING & feelING | Chapter 4 So is there objective truth? Heron describes objectivity through the broader web of intersubjectivity. Physical science. norms and beliefs .’19 Through sheer boredom Man may seek an escape from the cyclical madness which becomes increasingly meaningless with each incarnation . birth and death . Science. Maya is eternal and inexhaustible. the principle of relativity and duality . therefore. the most fruitful principle was ‘symmetry . But this is not all: its objectivity is also relative to how it is intersubjectively shaped …It presupposes participation. through meeting and dialogue.] Paramahansa yogananda. In ‘her’ own domain. shared values. ‘What can be known about the cosmos is that it is always known as a subjectively articulated world. no law of physics. future scientists can no more than probe one aspect after another of her varied infinitude . cannot formulate laws outside of Maya . Mystic. or any other science is free from inherent opposite or contrasted principles . yogananda warns.’ In the twentieth century. unable to reach finality. will be ‘duality . fit to discover the laws of an already existing and functioning cosmos but powerless to detect what is beyond . Physicist 17 The Vedic scriptures declare that the physical world operates under one fundamental law of Maya. pleasure and pain. therefore. God is absolute Unity .’16 Complementary Dualities — Fascinating Maya In the nineteenth century (and before) the guiding idea was ‘geometry . whose objectivity is relative to how it is shaped by the knower .’ Tom Siegfried. The royal philosopher laments in the Bible: 35 . in a culture of shared art and shared language (including the rules of language). the entire phenomenal world is under the inexorable sway of polarity.

event or thing .jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS ’Vanity of vanities! all is vanity . In other words. all things are wearisome… The eye is not satisfied with seeing Or the ear filled with hearing What has been is what will be. Often we can also have ‘mixed feelings’ about a person. …it is an unhappy business that God has given human beings [and physicists] to be busy with . we do not find it difficult to move into an appositional state in abstract thinking or feeling . Perception It is interesting that we have no problem holding conflicting ideas in our heads in abstract thinking . ecclesiastes 20 Thinking and Feeling vs. and what has been done is what will be done There is nothing new under the sun . all is vanity and a chasing after wind . But is this also true for perception and imagination (perceiving through our mind’s eye)? 36 .’ The Bible. What do people gain from all the toil under the sun? a generation goes and a generation comes… The sun rises and the sun goes down .

This splitting. This opposition.’ divided into opposite (but complementary) poles . usually considered a defense mechanism. as noted earlier . discriminating consciousness (as opposed to non-discriminating awareness) appears from the very moment that oppositions arise — splitting probably corresponds to the first conscious activity . The infant enjoys this non-discriminating awareness because left brain development (which gives rise to discriminating consciousness) lags behind right brain development at this stage. neither sleeping nor excited.CHaPTer 5 Split reality The world must suffer under the pairs of opposites forever . according to def Jehning .’ is superimposed on it by (discriminating) consciousness . especially when he is at rest. says Jehning . which is by no means present in the observed ‘thing-in-itself. By it human experience becomes ‘split. ramayana Binary Splitter in the Brain Def Jehning Non-discriminating awareness constitutes the ordinary condition of the infant. has a structuring effect. 37 .

also.jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS Newberg and d’ Aquili The binary operator [in the brain] does not simply observe and identify opposites. whose meaning is intimately related to its partner . andrew Newburg and eugene d’aquili. each opposite in the dyad derives its meaning from its contrast with the other opposite (its mirror image) — they do not represent absolute functions . pleasure or pain. you have not yet gotten rid of the habit of dividing things that by their nature are indivisible. This is identical to the dynamics of ‘yin’ and ‘yang. present themselves as systems of antinomies. good/evil. lesions in this area of the brain have been found to prevent patients from being able to name the opposite of any word presented to them . right or wrong. Neuroscientists 1 Myths. because of a basic function of the brain that they call the ‘binary operator . or dyads. No brain lacking some kind of parietal area could think in terms of opposites. life/death. they say. but in a very real sense it creates them . while for other 38 . according to Newberg and d’aquili. when we experience something as good or bad. Newberg and d’aquili conjecture that the binary operator is located on the inferior parietal lobule of the dominant side (usually the left brain) and is simply one way that the mind seeks to understand the world . We need a way to divide space and time into more comprehensible units to orientate ourselves to the outside world .’ described in Chinese philosophy .] Surangama Sutra 3 The inferior parietal lobule of the left brain not only generates conceptualisations but may be responsible for the human proclivity (which is hardwired in the human brain) for abstract antinomous or binary thinking . which had developed in the sense organs since time immemorial . [emphasis added . or polar opposites: heaven/hell. There is abundant evidence in Science and almost every other aspect of our everyday life that our brains decompose or break down indivisible reality into complementary pairs of opposites . and the binary operator evolved for a purpose . But what does it do after this? It integrates some complementary pairs into wholes. The binary operator abstracts qualities of things and arranges them as pairs of opposites. this is because our binary operator is helping divide reality into sets of opposites or dyads .’2 The binary operator helps us to perceive (a particular) reality by ordering it into pairs of opposites .

SPlIT realITy | Chapter 5 complementary pairs it suppresses one attribute of the pair which it finds (logically) dissonant . anti-correlated) minds ‘cancel out’ to a void? We will attempt to answer this question in the next few Chapters . as albert and loewer have suggested the “Many-Minds” interpretation . Will his many (partial. david Bohm has argued strongly that this is de Witt’s interpretation of everett’s theory . implicit in everett’s interpretation is that each person has a total mind that can split into many sub-minds that are not aware of each other .’ The observations are correlated and its sum is zero . Perception is therefore driven and structured by an internal logic peculiar to a brain and its evolutionary history . each mind can be aware of a particular brain state corresponding to a memory of a particular experimental result that is stable and distinct from other memories corresponding to different results of the experiment . Thus everett replaces the random ‘collapsing’ of the wave function by the random ‘partitioning’ of the total mind . Everett’s Many-Minds Interpretation Many books on quantum mechanics have cited Hugh everett’s theory as ‘everett’s Many-Universes/Worlds’ theory — suggesting that the universe splits into innumerable parts to accommodate every outcome of the experiment in a measurement process . but a theory of many viewpoints of one universe . according to david Bohm. everett’s theory relates the universe to various points of view that are contained within it . There is no mention of splitting universes in everett’s work . everett’s aim is not mainly to explain the universe. but to explain our perceptions of the universe . Indeed everett’s view should not even be called the many-worlds interpretation but rather. ‘We repeat again what Squires has said — it is not a theory of many universes. 5 What would happen if a person is able to integrate his many partial minds? Perhaps advanced meditation techniques allow this to happen . 39 .’ The Many-Minds interpretation assumes that physical reality corresponds to the total wave function of the universe . everett did not contemplate the splitting of the universe . When one mind observes ‘plus 1’ the other mind observes ‘minus 1 . but it is just awareness as a whole that divides into many parts that are not aware of each other . the wave function would be in a linear superposition . If the mind were in the domain of quantum mechanics. everett’s theory had a different orientation . it is not the universe that splits. everett then assumes a random process in which the original mind splits into two distinct minds each observing a mirror image of the other’s experimental result .4 according to david Bohm.

it is impossible in any single universe for an object to exhibit two or more contrafactual attributes at the same time . Whether the rejected complementary attribute is immediately conscious. a coin showing heads and tails simultaneously would be a coin showing one side up in one universe and the other down in another universe .jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS Complementary Attributes and Universes. while for other complementary pairs. We see that when an experiment is set up in one way. we also cannot hope to see antimatter objects because they will be mysteriously and conveniently annihilated by matter objects . There is abundant evidence that the multiverse appears to our brains to be composed of a plethora of pairs of particles and universes with complementary attributes .’ It has also been found that this universe favors ‘left-handed’ particles . Our physical brains also cannot see very high energy objects . each universe is the confluence of agreements concerning what is logically consistent . scientific instruments can go somewhat further in what they can measure and observe . anti-particles can also be considered as particles moving backward in time — in other words. Compared to our physical sensory systems. they appear as particles — much like how our brains operate . electrons appear as waves. and the Brain It is a scientific fact that each elementary particle has a complementary opposite — a special partner called its anti-particle that has the same mass but the opposite electric charge . according to richard feynman. But they too have their limitations . generating perceptual cycles) or is left in the unconscious. depends on the degree of dissonance between the attributes in the complementary pair . Nevertheless. one attribute is suppressed .6 Perhaps our serial mode of perception confines us to a 3d universe which is blocked-off from other contrafactual universes . becomes conscious later (hence. In supersymmetry theories. do you see an old woman or a young lady in this popular illustration? 40 . when the context of the experiment is changed. Objects comprising these reflected particles are invisible to us . matter-particles (fermions) are reflected as force-particles (bosons) and vice versa . there are complementary pairs of interlocking attributes that can be processed by our brains as a whole — for example the edge and the surface of an object can be processed in parallel streams and then synthesize to present one object to consciousness. We cannot see matter with reverse parity (the so-called mirror matter). yet why do we not experience contrafactual universes at the same time? Why do we live in a matter-dominated left-handed ‘classical’ universe? according to fred alan Wolf. in ‘reversed time . Contrafactual universes exist and stabilize each other under david deutsche’s Many-Worlds interpretation of quantum physics .

Classical ‘either-or’ logic is generally associated 41 . and then as a particle — but not both at the same time . and a rendition on an advertisement for the anchor Buggy Company from 1890 provided another early example . you will notice that when you are relaxed you can accommodate both images in your conscious perception . an anonymous German postcard from 1888 depicted the image in its earliest known form. This is no different from an experimental set-up (to make strong measurements) which ‘sees’ (or measures) an electron first as a wave. In fact. the easier it becomes .SPlIT realITy | Chapter 5 Figure 2: Old Lady or Young Girl? We see above a famous perceptual illusion in which the brain switches between seeing a young girl and an old woman . are you able to see the old woman and the young lady at the same time? Impossible? Try to oscillate between the two for about a minute. while relaxing yourself . the more you relax. It suppresses dissonant attributes . However. if it is relaxed and noncritical (making only weak measurements) it tends to accommodate even contradictory attributes . The oscillation is analogous to a background-foreground switching activity . This shows that a brain (making strong measurements) can only accept a group of attributes when it considers them logically self-consistent .

memories and biases significantly influence perception .jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS with the left brain . after drawing the image they initially perceived. Why does yin and yang oscillate in our daily life? Bhagwan Shree rajneesh. When we love we hate also . the second part comes up which prompts him to say. Our everyday perception appears to be largely driven by the ‘either-or’ logic — generally associated with the left brain . for example. that is why many meditative techniques stress the importance of ‘unlearning’ and ‘keeping an open mind. and still could not identify it in their sketch. ‘Both-and’ logic. This underscores the fact that our perceptions are determined by the internal logic that our brains use at any point of time . they are complementary opposites . then this predisposition can affect the way he sees the image .’ so that you ‘see things as they are . He who is our friend is also our enemy deep within . participants were even told what the other image was. This influence has been shown to be quite strong . they knew that the image could be perceived as one figure or the other) and then asked to sketch the figure they perceived . is an inherited form of selective perception . even though the drawings were not very dissimilar from the original . in one experiment 8 participants were shown a reversible figure briefly (in other words. “This man is Satan .’ 42 . The perception of a particular 3d universe. the other decreases — in other words. when according to Science we are living in a multidimensional multiverse.’ is generally associated with the right brain . Previous learning moulds expectations. They are interdependent — when one increases. so where will the second part go? It will lie under the first waiting for it to exhaust itself . resulting in selective attention or perception . a modern mystic.’7 expectations. Perhaps. The first gets tired — after all how long can this man keep saying “God”? When he is tired. which is also sometimes described as ‘quantum logic.” Now these are not two things: they are one . It effectively blocks the complementary or contrary view . If a person views an ambiguous figure and is predisposed to see one figure instead of the other. This gives us an idea of how strong and persistent the influence on visual processing can be . Generalization ‘yin and yang’ are symbols of all the fundamental dualities in life in Chinese philosophy . tries to explain: ‘The mind is made up of pairs of opposites. all of them could not identify the other figure from their sketch .

‘Conscious perception is always coherent. the two ears or two parts of skin. Since the two streams appear to be in the same space. it is proposed that if subjects in an experiment relaxed their gaze and/or attention (i . To obtain coherence (i . It would. (In reality.’10 It seems that inputs to the two eyes.) an integrated (binocular) vision breaks down if there are significant differences between the inputs presented to the two eyes . Oscillations and Suppression of Dissonant Sensations researchers. We can handle two 43 . used two visual streams — a grating moving upward in front of one eye and downward in front of the other .e . Baars says. However you can switch attention from one activity to another rapidly — so that it appears that you are conscious of more than one activity . We cannot do two things consciously at the same time.e . dissonant auditory inputs are also suppressed . and down the next moment . such as carrying on an intense conversation and driving in busy traffic .SPlIT realITy | Chapter 5 Serial-Linear Operation of Conscious Left Brain according to psychologists. two representations can be proved to exist fleetingly in the brain. When one activity becomes conscious. it may be possible to maintain an awareness of two different images or activities . Nikos logothetis and Jeffrey Schall. but only one can be conscious at a time . there were two separate independent visual streams moving in opposite directions . therefore. In general. it seems to be impossible for human beings to hold two different interpretations of the same thing in consciousness at the same time . even if the nervous system needs to cancel some input in favor of another .e . In the same way. any significant disparity in the inputs to the two eyes or ears causes one of the two flows to be suppressed . we know only a single coherent event in each moment — a visual scene. they cannot be interpreted as two separate streams . the other activity recedes to the background and is operated in an unconscious mode — again analogous to foreground-background switching — with the conscious left brain in the foreground and the ‘unconscious’ right brain in the background during most of the day . a mental image or a fleeting thought . either compete or cooperate . It is only when attention is focused strongly on one activity or part (i .9 according to Baars. many experiments show that the visual system will suppress one image in favor of another . In many cases. It was found in this experiment that one of the two (visual streams) is always suppressed (by the brain). when the brain makes strong measurements of the environment) that the other activity or part recedes to the background . when the brain makes only weak measurements of the environment). appear to us as if the grating was moving up one moment. to reduce dissonance). However.

says Baars . which is attributed with parallel processing abilities. there is no consciousness) . leaving 4 hertz . The so-called ‘binaural beat’ would then cause the whole brain to resonate in the theta frequency of 4 hertz . This is perceived as redundancy in the brain — and the brain possibly ‘switches-off. the 404 hertz cancels out against 400 hertz.11 Stephen Grossberg shows that complementary pairs of attributes. Appearances and Reality a stick in the water may look ‘broken’ but we know from scientific analysis that it is not broken and that this ‘illusion’ is caused by refracting light . logically) consistent.’ leaving the mind to be catapulted to a higher dimensional perception (by analogy — the transthesis) .’ In ‘both-and’ (or symmetric) logic (used by the right brain) the attribute and contrary attribute are not distinguished — they are treated similarly and equally . Perhaps. furthermore. In other words. The appearance is of a broken stick but the ‘reality’ is that it is continuous . it has been noticed that when the same input is given to the brain repeatedly. Cancellation of Contrary Sensations? Imagine if human beings can train their brains to see. our experience tells us that the 44 . One device that actually evidences a cancellation of sensations received by the right and left brains is robert Monroe’s ‘Hemi-Sync’ device which uses two different signals to the two ears .13 If we applied complementary signals — for example. rather than compete . that is why the right brain. the same frequency but phased-out — there would be a cancellation or a ‘subtractive combination’ of complementary sensations . appeared to be ‘unconscious’ (in early twentieth century experiments relating to the brain) although it was processing inputs from the environment and the left brain continuously . then we would expect a cancellation of sensations and a cancellation of consciousness (the latter because without contraries.12 This is when the inputs co-operate. for example. when a subject is required to be put into a theta brain wave state the technique is to send a signal of 400 hertz through one ear and 404 hertz through the other .jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS streams of visual or auditory information only when they are mutually (i . the brain simply ‘switches-off’ because of the redundancy in the ‘data . hear or feel (consciously) opposing or competing complementary sensations at the same time. instead of oscillating — What would they perceive? We would expect the oscillations to become more rapid until it became superposed. for example. and then synthesized by the brain as a single object to be viewed by consciousness . according to physicist Gary Zukau. the surface and boundary of an object can be processed in parallel streams subconsciously.e .

andrew Newberg and eugene d’ aquili Neuroscientists 14 45 . however (for example by adopting a non-critical receptive right-brain approach). Our illusory consciousness of this or that object then vanishes . but it is not . the world cannot be as it appears . In other words. What we perceive to be physical reality is actually our cognitive suppression of the symmetric void — i .SPlIT realITy | Chapter 5 physical world is solid. The world that emerges from the cognitive suppression may appear to be substantive. and independent of us . Quantum mechanics says. Symmetry in the void breaks down in a cascade due to this continuous suppression .e . even our most basic sensory perceptions of the world around us can be thought of as an explanatory story created by the brain . suppressions by the brain of one attribute of a complementary pair of attributes due to cognitive dissonance in the brain . If dissonance reduces. real. all knowledge is metaphorical. the suppression eases and symmetry is restored . that this is not so — it is a superposition of waves . simply.

The monkeys continued to ‘trip’ no matter what parts of the brains were missing until both temporal lobes were removed . also function to mediate states of consciousness . as a whole. in addition to all their other functions (including the processing of music).1 Temporal Lobe Epilepsy (TLE) experiments on monkeys suggest that the temporal lobes mediate various states of consciousness . has been associated with religious experiences . She believes that God’s action in human life must be through interactions with the human brain . In this state. In the experiments. professor of Christian philosophy at fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena. thinks that how God acts in the natural world is one of the most pressing theological questions . understood to govern both arousal and quiescence . certain parts of the left and right brains have been associated with mystical experiences .CHaPTer 6 The Brain and Mystical experiences The right brain. The latter is thought to play a role in experiences of active bliss similar to mystical trances and raptures . is believed simultaneously to generate a sense of calmness and alertness contributing to the religious experience of being ‘wholly other . California. 46 .’ Nancey Murphy. More specifically. monkeys were given lSd after having various parts of their brains removed . These include the temporal lobe and a part of the brain near the core. part of the brain. The conclusion was that the temporal lobes.

he can also induce odd mental experiences — possibly caused by bursts of neuron firing (similar to epileptic seizures) in the temporal lobes . for example.’ 2 Temporal lobe epilepsy (or Tle) has been linked to divine encounters. floating. fearful encounters with alien beings . epiphanies of artistic creation.e . ‘Something has happened in their temporal lobes that heightened their response to religious terms and icons. Ontario. By testing patients who suffer seizures from temporal lobe epilepsy or ‘Tle. Tle has also often been linked to a variety of transcendent experiences: ecstatic communion with the divine. a woman who was suffering from Tle testified. strokes or head injuries . as well as other mystical experiences . ‘There may be a selective enhancement of emotions conducive to religious experience .THe Br aIN aNd MySTICal exPerIeNCeS | Chapter 6 at San diego’s University of California’s Centre for Brain and Cognition. Some of my seizures are like entering another dimension. More recently.’ says ramachandran . found that people with frequent bursts of electrical activity in their temporal lobes report sensations of flying. at times. I see things slightly different than before . and it has played to my creative side . I have visions and images that normal people don’t have . report overwhelming feelings of ‘union with the universe . a neuroscientist at laurentian University in Sudbury. a significant proportion of people with Tle report that their seizures (i .’ The researchers found these people also have a heightened but completely involuntary neural response to religious language . he has made people feel as if two alien hands grabbed their shoulders and distorted their legs when he applied magnetic fields to their brains . and sometimes beyond myself. harrowing. or leaving the body. during seizures. uncanny fear . Michael Persinger. epilepsy has given me a rare vision and insight into myself. Such epileptics display an unusual obsession with religious matters and. Vilayanur ramachandran studies patients with epilepsy. artistic creation and disturbing visitations from other realms . I would not have begun to sculpt . several Tle nuns have provided further evidence for an epileptic root of many mystical religious experiences .’ his team found intriguing hints of ‘dedicated neural machinery’ affecting how intensely someone may respond to spiritual or mystical experiences . By applying magnetic fields to the brain. luminous insight — or. brain lesions. the closest to religious or spiritual feelings I’ve ever had . one former nun ‘apprehended’ God in Tle seizures and described the experience: ‘Suddenly everything comes together in a moment — everything adds 47 . when there is a breakdown in the neural machinery) often bring on extraordinary experiences of transcendent wonder. ‘With Tle.’ This condition is caused by unusual electrical activity in the brain’s temporal lobes . Without Tle. for example.

But Professor Holmes believes there may be another far more prosaic explanation for her visions . is sometimes our interpretation of altered activities in the temporal lobes and the limbic region of the brain . helping to convince her followers that she was indeed spiritually inspired . she was semi-conscious for several weeks and so ill she never returned to school . Persinger has conducted experiments with a helmet that pulses bursts of electrical activity to the brain. stimulating what he calls a ‘God experience . dostoevsky. because Tle personalities have obviously accomplished great things. david Bear from Harvard Medical School believes that ‘a temporal lobe focus in superior individuals (like van Gogh.’ religion. for everyone.’ The experience of God. whose depth and meaning have radiated far beyond the electrical storms in a single brain . Persinger’s Findings — Instant TLEs Persinger believes that spiritual experiences come from altered electrical activity in the brain .’ american neurologist Professor Gregory Holmes studied the life of ellen White.jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS up. following the accident.’ We will never know for sure whether religious figures in the past definitely did have the disorder but scientists now believe the condition provides an insight into revealing how religious experience may impact on the brain . Saint Paul and Moses) may spark an extraordinary search for the entity we alternatively call truth or beauty . ‘The patterns we use are complex but they imitate what the 48 . is definitely produced in the brain . it now appears that activity in the temporal lobes can be altered to generate certain types of religious and spiritual experiences . who was the spiritual founder of the Seventh-day adventist movement . ellen’s personality changed dramatically and she became highly religious and moralistic . Professor Holmes is convinced that the blow to ellen’s head caused her to develop temporal lobe epilepsy . ‘Her whole clinical course to me suggested the high probability that she had temporal lobe epilepsy . and you’re flooded with a sense of joy . Mohammad. ‘There are certain brain patterns that can be generated experimentally that will generate the sense. and for the first time in her life. he says. whether they have the medical condition or not.’ says Persinger . during her life. then. ellen had hundreds of dramatic religious visions which were critical in the establishment of the church. presence and the feeling of God-like experiences. This is not to demean the mystical experience. she began to have powerful religious visions . ellen suffered a severe blow to her head . They believe what happens inside the minds of temporal lobe epileptic patients may just be an extreme case of what goes on inside all of our minds . as a result. at the age of nine.

there is fairly equal neuronal activity in both the right and left temporal cortexes . dream-like hallucinations. Persinger argues that the left hemisphere interprets the right hemisphere as a separate sensed presence. the left hemisphere of which Persinger suggests is responsible for our sense of self . The limbic system also labels specific events such as the sight of loved ones with significance . so that the nerve cells typically involved in seeing and hearing are not stimulated . generating a low-frequency milligauss magnetic field .) Why would such sensations arise when the limbic and temporal lobe regions are stimulated? Can we make neurological sense of the religious visions and feelings? Inside the temporal lobes is the temporal cortex. subjects often report specifically religious. researchers can cause the helmet’s currents to create micro-seizures in specific regions . it makes sense that subjects experience strong emotions and sensations of forced movement . But his research into patterns of brain activity led him to explore the nature of mystical experiences as well . This ‘God Helmet’ gently creates miniature-versions of temporal lobe epileptic seizures by causing short-lived increases in the neuronal firing in the temporal lobes . This region also controls certain aspects of movement . When the temporal lobes are stimulated. When this region is stimulated with Persinger’s helmet. The magnetic field. no stronger than that produced by a computer monitor. Persinger claims that most people can experience timelessness and even meet God simply by strapping on his unique helmet . where the hippocampus (associated with equilibrium and memory) and the amygdala (associated with emotion) reside . Patients sit reclined. distortions in their body image and sensations of forced motion . Then he applies a magnetic field pattern over the right hemisphere of the brain .’ Persinger originally set out to explore the nature of creativity and sense of self . or sometimes as God . the helmet simulates epileptic seizures — but in a safe way . The helmet is strapped to their heads and currents shoot from its solenoids into the brain. The limbic system’s unusual activity during spiritual experience may 49 . subjects report experiencing extreme emotions.THe Br aIN aNd MySTICal exPerIeNCeS | Chapter 6 brain does normally . and four out of five subjects report sensing a spectral presence in the room with them . depriving them of light and sound. by strapping on Persinger’s helmet. when activity gets out of synch say. (Narcotic drugs and alcohol have often produced similar effects . To do this Persinger puts his subjects in a quiet room. In other words. isolated from sound and with eyes covered . When currents are aimed into the limbic regions in the brain. In most people. rotates anticlockwise in a pattern around the temporal lobes . However. This usually happens in conjunction with extra stimulation in the limbic system.

the brain generates erroneous experiences. we cannot conclude from this that all these experiences of invisible beings are totally imagined . In other words. personal crisis. anxiety and other physiological stressors . a good trickster can show a very good hologram of an orange from a distance . It will 50 . a human being’s own higher energy bodies may be able to sense them . such as feeling the presence of other (invisible) beings . This dissociation may correlate with the dissociation between the temporal lobes . and found that they tended to have subtle hemispheric mismatch all the time — even when not suffering a seizure . including the author’s ‘Our Invisible Bodies. as pointed out in the metaphysical literature. although it is only a representation . a oneness with the Universe. low blood sugar. Persinger is simulating presences which the brain (and its higher energy counterparts) has evolved to respond to . The Counter-Arguments Simulations Persinger claims that by putting on his helmet.’ But those who do may have been predisposed for such an encounter by the inter-hemispheric circuits in their temporal lobes . Obviously. But most spiritual experiences appear to involve more or less dramatically the same parts of the brain . Many may believe that it is in fact an orange. although they are difficult for current scientific instruments to detect (due to their very high frequencies).) Since perceptions are generated by what the senses tell the brain through a network of nerves. and to varying degrees of intensity . so that the subject is introduced to a new reality . (Other aspects actually deactivate parts of the brain. Some people may be hard-wired to have such brain-region-specific experiences more frequently. and are more prone to dissociation .’ higher energy bodies are electromagnetic in nature . and a sense of infinity . That doesn’t mean that all perceptions of oranges are illusions .jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS help to associate feelings of deep awe and emotional significance with the experience of a sensed presence. Not everyone may have a ‘God-experience . there is a wide range of spiritual connections that one can experience without Persinger’s helmet . One study suggests that people with mystical experiences are more connected to their subliminal unconscious. some aspects of Persinger’s experiments are tricking the brain to conclude that it is seeing or sensing something . However. Miniature temporal lobe seizures occasionally occur in otherwise healthy people without the aid of Persinger’s helmet . Persinger tested subjects with tendencies for mystical and spiritual experience. any interception in the network to introduce erroneous data will make the brain come to erroneous conclusions . high altitude. Potential triggers for seizures include fatigue.

Neurosurgeons who stimulate the limbic region during surgery say their patients report having religious experiences . then it is only when brain processes break down that Persinger’s subjects experience a different reality . says that high levels of magnetic stimulation have been found to influence brain functions very briefly and can have effects somewhat like that of a temporary small brain lesion in the area of the brain that is stimulated . by extension. this simply confirms that when the brain of a lower energy body ‘breaks down. from this point of view. 51 . deactivation of other parts of the brain may also give rise to mystical or spiritual experiences . tagging them with special significance . to chemical reactions in the brain . scientists are able to induce all the sensations of eating an apple pie in the brain of a person . most theologians are able to distinguish between life and mind having a clearly definable chemical basis and the phenomenon of life and mind that most of us don’t believe can be reduced to chemistry . the stimulation of one part of the brain can lead to the deactivation of other parts of the brain . This evidences a ‘stimulate cum block’ sequence .’ the cognitive system of a higher energy body is activated — giving rise to a new reality . John Haught. Hence. a theologian at the Georgetown University Centre for the Study of Science and religion. ‘However. though sometimes less dramatically than meditation or seizures. This does not mean that an apple pie was actually eaten . These activities. dancing. Professor of Psychology at Harvard University. Theologians and scientists caution against any attempt to reduce spirituality and. or why chanting and ritual is so important to many religious traditions .’ Deactivations of Other Parts of the Brain Besides the temporal lobe. This helps explain the transcendent experiences which some musicians report.THe Br aIN aNd MySTICal exPerIeNCeS | Chapter 6 not be surprising. can also cause the hippocampus to block neuronal activity to other parts of the brain. a limbic region (at the core of the brain) stimulated by music. 3 If that is so. outlined in the author’s book ‘Our Invisible Bodies’4. Deactivating the Brain daniel Wegner. if following Persinger. said the research confirmed that most spiritual experiences are deeply connected to brain processes . the specific regions of the brain are not being stimulated but are being deactivated . This too would have followed the ‘stimulate cum block’ sequence . Neither does it mean that apple pies do not exist just because you can simulate the sensations in the brain . Based on the Many Bodies-Many Universes theory of metaphysics. religious belief. or the chanting of religious ceremonies can trigger less intense spiritual experiences .

in schizophrenia there may also be experiences of thought insertion (having another person’s thoughts appear in your own mind). it is only when the brain’s normal functioning breaks down that such unusual activities occur . thought broadcasting (hearing your own thoughts spoken aloud).jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS according to daniel Wegner. or alien control (experiencing one’s actions as performed by someone else) . The voices are very close and real . 5 In other words. These symptoms usually are interpreted as originating outside the self . sometimes in another’s voice). thought echo (experiencing one’s thoughts over again. The drugs used to treat schizophrenia simply pushes the brain back to normalcy .’ after the psychiatrist Kurt Schneider . The brain cannot therefore effectively insulate the consciousness from other realities . 52 . Such experiences are often called ‘Schneiderian symptoms.

CHaPTer 7 deactivating the Brain a leading study has been conducted by dr andrew Newberg. Blocked off from neuronal activity. Before they meditated. concluded that intense spiritual contemplation triggers an alteration in brain activity . In the experiments Newberg invited Tibetan Buddhists to his laboratory and set them up with their rugs. with his late colleague dr eugene d’aquili. in the department of Psychiatry using hightech imaging techniques to examine the brains of meditating Buddhists and franciscan nuns at prayer . the left superior parietal lobe creates the perception of the physical body’s boundaries . an intravenous tube was inserted . using what is known as single positron emission computed tomography (SPeCT). The isotope remained in the brain long enough so that once the meditation was over the subjects could be put under the rotating triple-head SPeCT camera (similar to that used in hospital scans) and photographed to reveal images of their brain activity . the parietal lobes showed very little activity . associated with attention. The right superior parietal lobe creates the perception of the physical space outside of the body . More specifically. cushions and prayer wheels . the prefrontal cortex. The parietal lobes are associated with the orientation of the body in space and processing information about time and space . lit up . This allowed a radioactive isotope to be directed when they pulled a string as they reached a peak meditative state . But more strikingly.1 The scientists. Since the meditators were focusing intently. the parietal lobe cannot create a sensation of boundary 53 .

especially on the right. It is involved in how we locate ourselves in physical space and integrates cues from the environment so that we do not walk into a door or fall down the stairs . The study found that different parts of the brain can block input into other parts . but the distinction between self and the other is obliterated.’ 2 The authors also cite studies of seven other Tibetan Buddhists and several franciscan nuns . Beforehand. which is just behind the crown of the skull . results in a sense of pure space . ‘a dulling 54 . and this perception would feel utterly and unquestionably real . a marked color change was noted in a small region on the left side of the cerebrum called the posterior superior parietal lobule. Since the parietal lobes were also unable to perform their usual task of creating our linear perception of time.’ Newberg says . The researchers mapped these subjects’ brains both before and at the peak of their transcendent feelings . the brain would ‘have no choice’ but to perceive that the self is ‘endless and intimately interwoven with everyone and everything the mind senses . which may explain the meditators’ sense of oneness with the Universe. meditators achieved a sensation of infinity and timelessness . signaling a substantial decline in activity . The subjective experience is one of spacelessness or of total perfect unity . ‘It is still trying to give that orientation but it no longer has any input on which to work . say Newberg and d’ aquili . when the posterior superior parietal lobules on both sides are totally deafferented. the scan’s computer portrays the brain’s activity as a palette of fierce reds and rich yellows . The total deafferentation (or ‘cutting-off’) of the posterior superior parietal lobe. however. according to Newberg and d’aquili . during meditation or prayer. during deep meditation. ‘you can block out the input into the area that is giving you an orientation of space and time. The posterior superior parietal lobule in the left hemisphere is responsible for the self-other dichotomy . With no sensory stimulus to delineate the borderline between the self and the world. 3 The posterior superior parietal lobule is responsible for the orientation of objects in 3d space .jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS between the physical body and the outside world. not only is there a sense of absolute space.’ The neuroscientists say. the authors conclude. The flaming reds had turned into a deep azure. The theory is that this gives you a sense of no space and no time . The authors termed the specific region the orientation association area and they believe that the decrease in its activity during meditation or prayer is highly significant .’ Newberg says that by blocking the ‘orientation association area’ the brain would have no choice but to perceive that the self is endless and intimately interwoven with everyone and everything the mind senses .

The total shutdown of neural input would have a dramatic effect on both the left and right brains .’ In neurological parlance. In this state of deafferentation of the orientation area.deaCTIVaTING THe Br aIN | Chapter 7 of spatial perception could well be the key to experiencing a fluid sense of spiritual communion. William Blake 55 . it has also been found that one hemisphere can be prevented from knowing what is occurring in the opposite hemisphere via the inhibitory actions of the frontal lobes.4 In split-brain operations. this would also help explain why mystical occurrences. The mind would exist without (the concept of an) ego in a pure state of undifferentiated awareness — a void consciousness — the ultimate unitary state — according to Newberg and d’ aquili . This continuum of experiences links the most profound mystical states to the mundane states in daily life . which houses the ‘attention association area . infinite . no sense of space or the passage of time. the left brain could also be considered cut-off or deafferented from the right brain. the mind would perceive a neurological reality consistent with many mystical descriptions of the ultimate spiritual union: There would be no discrete objects or beings. are often described in metaphorically similar terms . which is responsible for creating the neurological matrix we experience as physical space. More specifically. Thirdly. alternatively. this implies that the self arises as a by-product of spatial and temporal perceptions because this area of the brain generates the spacetime matrix in which we live . In a sense. no line between the self and the rest of the universe . according to Newberg and d’aquili . thus experiencing infinite space and time. and vice-versa .’ The effects of deafferentation of the orientation association area include a softening of the boundaries of the self . there are drugs that can suppress the functions of one of the hemispheres . The intensity of the experience depends upon the degree of the neural blockage — so there is a spectrum of ‘unitary states’ that can be experienced . The right brain’s orientation area. 5 If the doors of perception were cleansed every thing would appear to man as it is. across a wide range of faiths. such as many mystics do. when inputs to the orientation association area are interrupted. it has to work with whatever inputs it has and its internal logic. would lack the information it needs to create the spatial context in which the self can be oriented . the orientation association area becomes deafferented or cut-off from inputs from other parts of the brain .

both elementary and elaborate. whenever one considers or perceives the global or unitary perspective of things. but is not proved to be factual itself. The causal operator gives us the ability to perceive reality in terms of causal sequences . feel.’ Cognitive Operators Newberg and d’aquili say that functions localised to discrete regions in the brain are not complex faculties of the mind.’ regardless of the particular object or group of objects involved.e . in other words it allows us to string together thoughts and experiences as sequentially related facts that produce a causal effect .6 The neuroscientists have hypothesised seven fundamental cognitive operators in analyzing the operation of the brain as mind. In a way these operations. and interpret the universe . one is employing the holistic operator . (5) the binary operator. is generated by the abstractive operator . infinite . any idea that is based on some factual evidence. The reductionist operator does just the opposite for us by allowing us to discriminate and break wholes down into parts . These functions allow the mind to think. which combines with the function of the other operators to form the overall basis of the functioning of the mind in response to the external world . multiplied. It helps us develop a sense of causality lying behind all that we experience. on the other hand. experience. subtracted. and (7) the emotional-value operator . (6) the quantitative operator. order. Often these two operators combine to help form a more accurate view of our ever-changing reality . each cognitive operator carries out a specific function. and divided with a wide range of other bits of processed information through the associations provided by neural pathways in the brain .jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS Perhaps we should say. allows for more creative input in the understanding of reality by forming general concepts based on individual and unconnected thoughts and experience . The holistic operator gives us the ability to perceive reality as a whole. (4) the abstractive operator. The processes of association along with the plasticity of these connections provide the human brain with a multiplicity of possible expressions . as follows: (1) the holistic operator. ‘If the doors of (sensory) perception were completely shut (i . are similar to operations performed in basic mathematics as processed information from different areas of the brain are added. 56 . deafferented) every thing would appear to man as it is. The abstractive operator. (2) the reductionist operator. to see the ‘big picture . More elaborate faculties are constructed from the serial and parallel interconnections of several brain regions . (3) the causal operator. but elementary operations .

like vision and hearing . as we pondered the question. in some sense. be imaged with the new technology . and it is from this emotional value that we can use other operators to act on these generated feelings . right or wrong. We use this quantitative ability to help us order objects according to some numbering system or else by estimation of amount . even though the eyes of the dreamer are closed . When we experience something as good or bad.deaCTIVaTING THe Br aIN | Chapter 7 The binary operator helps us to perceive reality by ordering it into pairs of opposites . pleasure or pain. The words ‘real’ and ‘illusory’ become meaningless if one stays strictly within the brain . particularly those which mediate visual perceptions from the retina. The emotional-value operator places an emotional value upon the information received by the other cognitive operators. What if the orientation area was working hard as ever. show the orientation area to be bathed in dark blotches of cool greens and blues — colors that indicate a sharp reduction in activity levels . like peyote.’ because it represents the flux of electrons along neurons and the flow of neurotransmitters at synapses .7 Everything Must Pass through the Brain everything that happens in the brain can. making them similarly ‘real . Similarly. a fascinating possibility emerged . It is all.’ for example. this is because our binary operator is helping divide reality into sets of opposites or dyads . The quantitative operator permits us to perceive and order reality in a mathematical sense as it gives us the ability to quantify experiences . but the incoming flow of sensory information had somehow been blocked? andrew Newberg and eugene d’aquili 8 57 . The (SPeCT) scans taken at the peak of robert’s meditative state. that were used by some Native american tribes in their religious rites caused profound alterations in the circuits of the brain which mediate sensory perceptions. however. in principle. Colors would also change on a SPeCT scan during illusions and delusions. dreams are often interpreted as messages from a supernatural world and are associated with various changes in cerebral regions. ‘real. hallucinogens. It is important to note that each opposite in the dyad derives its meaning from its contrast with the other opposite…they do not represent an absolute function .

The context for the observations made by our sensory systems which constantly measure the environment is provided by the various association areas in the brain . it seems. Without an orientation to this 3d physical universe. It’s simply a brain deprived of an orientation association area . This superposed state can be reached if no (or only weak) measurements are made by our sensory systems . why does the whole orientation area show a sharp reduction in brain activity? Should we not at least see a spot of red or yellow within it? It appears more likely that the whole orientation association area was disabled . In a higher energy quantum-like universe. This means that the original hypothesis that the unitary state is generated by the orientation association area working on its internal logic has to be discarded . the brain receives information from the next universe via higher energy bodies . This is extremely difficult to achieve in our decoherent biomolecular brain which fixates on this physical universe . Newberg and d’ aquili say that if deafferentation causes the state of no space and no time. the conditions are actually a bit more complicated . The sensory system of a body can be compared to a measuring instrument in the laboratory participating in a double-slit experiment .jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS Limitations of the Newberg-d’Aquili Hypothesis The Newberg-d’aquili hypothesis raises a number of questions . It is only when certain specific 58 . In fact. Alternative Hypothesis What exists out there. If the orientation association area was working as frantically as Newburg and d’ aquili suggest. The moment we observe the world with our biomolecular system — the wavefunction collapses into our familiar universe . all elementary particles are in this absolute unitary state until observed in a particular context by a measuring instrument . ‘it matters little if the deafferentation causes the state or allows us to enter this state that already exists “out there” . In order to be consciously aware of the unitary state and remember what transpired during advanced meditation after the state passes.’ But they offer very little explanation as to how the internal logic generates the unitary state . the wavefunction of the universe (and the individual within it) does not necessarily collapse . The orientation association area. Without this area our brains would not be able to construct our 3d worlds . if we go by the findings of modern physics is a superposed fluid reality — not the concrete reality generated by our biomolecular brain . is simply disabled or by-passed — allowing us to enter a reality unencumbered by the brain’s constructions . It continues to ‘exist’ in a superposed state of void consciousness — or what Newberg and d’ aquili call the absolute unitary state .

and with the holistic operator in our biomolecular brain operating on them .11 In other words. we must start thinking to realise our individuality . when they are bypassed) that the state is experienced . It occurs mainly when the association areas and all the cognitive operators identified by Newberg and d’ aquili (except the holistic operator) in the brain are disabled . associations generate thoughts and thoughts generate associations in the brain . it seems that the language centres are generally bypassed in the generation of mystical experiences .’ There is no experience of existence without thought. there are no separate objects without thought . [emphasis added . life between life 10 according to Whitton and fisher. Thinking (or 59 .e . In the cases where the wavefunction of the higher energy quantum-like universe does not collapse. The association areas to be disabled include the orientation. according to Whitton and fisher . (The holistic operator need not be disabled . The attention area needs to be active to assimilate the experience at the biochemical level . If the whole brain was disabled we would not be able to assimilate the experience into our everyday consciousness . we disable our thought processes in order to approach unity with the Universe . the holistic operator operates on ‘total reality’ — or the total wavefunction — making very weak or no measurements . verbal-conceptual and visual association areas . When the relevant areas are disabled.) So it is not only the orientation association area which is disabled before the unitary state can be experienced . without it being filtered through the association areas in the biomolecular brain. the brain receives information directly from higher energy bodies. in the life-between-life state. [emphasis added .deaCTIVaTING THe Br aIN | Chapter 7 areas and operations of the brain are selectively disabled or switched-off (i . I Think Therefore I Am On earth.] andrew Newberg and eugene d’aquili 9 The cognitive operators that are disabled include the reductive. ‘discarnate life’ proceeds unconsciously.] Joel Whitton and Joe fisher. Neurophysiologically. abstractive and binary operators . and ‘only the act of thought allows us to see the edges of our separate clouds within the endless cloud of existence .

Saying attributed to Siddhartha Gautama 12 Surviving an interesting aspect of the unitary state is that in the unitary state not only is the 3d physical environment no longer experienced. this perception of mine would cease. Mind-at-large has to be funneled through the reducing valve of the brain and nervous system . He touches cessation . However. To make biological survival possible. It is not accidental. ‘Thinking is bad for me . descartes formula. when there are no perceived threats to our survival . from the perspective of observers. as he remains at the peak of perception. then. that perception ceases and another grosser perception does not appear . If I were to think and will. that intuitive insights and spiritual illumination occur when we are extremely relaxed — i . survival in this 3d space is irrelevant . he would be no different from a person who has a lesion in the Oaa of his brain . from the perspective of the unitary state. the thought occurs to him. If he was living in the wild. aldous Huxley 13 Is it Real? Skeptics claim that tracing the experience of God into the brain’s hardwiring and especially being able to create similar experiences with Persinger’s helmet proves that God is a figment of the imagination . Not thinking is better for me . and as he is neither thinking nor willing. They argue that no 60 .e . he would be easily eaten up by an animal . and a grosser perception would appear .jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS the generation of useful information) collapses the wavefunction . ‘I think therefore I am’ describes the situation well . What if I were neither to think nor to will?’ So he neither thinks nor wills. from the perspective of other observers in this 3d space the person would appear to be hopelessly ill-equipped to survive . If we could somehow ask or instruct the person experiencing the unitary state to stand-up or sit on a chair — he would experience difficulties because there is no 3d space provided by the Oaa . What comes out at the other end is a measly trickle of the kind of consciousness which will help us stay alive on the surface of the particular planet . but our bodies and brains also vanish .

’14 Neuroscientist eleanor rosch agrees with Zen practitioners that our everyday perception. It is no safer to say that spiritual urges and sensations are caused by brain activity than it is to say that the neurological changes through which we experience the pleasure of eating an apple cause the apple to exist . The difference lies in the fact that most of us agree on the physical existence of an apple . Newberg says that the fact that spiritual experiences can be associated with distinct neural activity does not necessarily mean that such experiences are mere neurological illusions . If we do trust our perceptions of the physical world (generated by the brain). we can convincingly mimic the fact of God?’ Believers counter with the argument that if God exists. reproduce.deaCTIVaTING THe Br aIN | Chapter 7 evidence indicates that a divine Power externally imposes these experiences . certain parts of your brain would become activated . religious visions are more difficult to describe. rosch and research partner Christine Skarda point out that the feelings of interconnectedness that people perceive during deep meditation may in fact be just as real as the popular assumption that humans are separate beings . Newberg says.15 If scientists ran the same tests. they would probably also find that each time you saw your mother-in-law. Some skeptics believe that temporal lobes may contribute to imagination and creativity. To be consistent we must also make the same claim for the objective reality of the Sun. david Noelle argues. is a dangerous conclusion to come to! Jumping 61 .’ though comforting. To suggest that the objective experience of God could be reduced to neurochemical flux is nothing more than naïve idealism . Others argue that we can never know one way or the other and fault the human brain’s limited conceptual abilities . Newberg and d’aquili however warned that too much should not be read into their findings . then we have no rational reason to declare that spiritual experience (also generated by the brain) is a fiction that is ‘only in the mind . through science. The reality is that it is the disabling of specific brain circuits while maintaining other brain operations that allow us to both experience and assimilate the experience of the unitary state and other intermediate states . The moments of oneness we experience may be the recovery of a larger reality . even the mostly universal agreement on the existence of apples. ‘How can you trust such an experience when. he would of course design the brain so that we could have some form of interaction with him . may be a useful fiction . hold in our hands and take a bite out of . Coming to the conclusion that your mother-in-law did not ‘really exist. but that spiritual experience is a mental error akin to deja vu . Our perception of separateness from the outer world may just be a handy ability that enables us to achieve certain sensations . the earth and our own bodies .

’ says Newberg . they have the means. say Newberg and d’aquili . and association would all light up. might be a serious misinterpretation of the true nature of these mystical experiences . Newberg likes to refer skeptics to the apple pie analogy . after declaring that these experiences are ‘not outside of the range of normal brain function. from the nearest chair or table to the farthest stars and galaxies. Sister Ilia delio. while other areas of the brain not involved in the task would go dark . including the brain . she believes. we may find reasons why certain people are more prone to religion. or the brain is set up by God because God wants us to have those experiences . The universe. ‘If we understand how the brain works. ‘In other words. smell. observably. But does that mean the apple pie isn’t ‘real’? Ultimately. If you ate a freshly baked.’ revelation. memory. all perceptions exist in the mind . the parts of your brain that register shape and form. Newberg says: ‘Neuroscience can’t answer that . is constructed from the information that the brain receives from the senses . the scientists suggest. If you were to dismiss spiritual experience as ‘mere’ neurological activities. and scientifically real . the chair you’re sitting. to know God . But she is adamant that a biological basis for the experience of God cannot be equated with God . but they are known to you only as secondhand neurological perceptions. need no longer be relegated to the spiritual realm — the sort of thing available only to a select few in the form of burning bushes or thundering voices in the desert . by all . the book you hold in your hands may all seem unquestionably solid and real. taste. in vibrant colors. It can be seen as images on a computer screen. believes that because human beings are created by God. you would also have to distrust all of your own brain’s perceptions of the material world. as blips and flashes racing along the neural pathways inside your skull . including the ‘hard-wiring’ of the brain. This experience leaves its footprint on the brain in much the same way as does a peak meditative moment . piping-hot slice of apple pie and took a SPeCT scan at the moment of your first bite. …If we do trust our perceptions of the physical world. The earth beneath your feet.’ Newberg concludes that.’ The research also implies that some people can be predisposed to religious experience and others are not .jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS to such conclusions. there may be one of two conclusions to draw: the brain is set up to generate the concepts of religion. The authors hypothesise that these images of the left posterior superior parietal lobe may provide a 62 . God. mystical experience is biologically. is the ground of all that exists and cannot in any way be equated with material reality. a neuro-pharmacologist and associate professor of spirituality and ecclesiastical history at Washington Theological Union. we have no rational reason to declare that spiritual experience is a fiction that is “only” in the mind .

’ . They insist that when compared to our baseline sense of reality.’ say the neuroscientists . absolute Unitary Being is more vividly. So. .deaCTIVaTING THe Br aIN | Chapter 7 ‘photograph of God . logic suggests that what is less real must be contained by what is more real . . it is through this neural pathway that ‘God gets into your head . it is more of a hallucination to experience space and time and feel the weight of your body than to ‘experience’ their absence . than the external world and the subjective awareness of the self — then the self and the world must be contained within. that is. ‘absolute unitary being . in the authors’ cross-cultural term. claim that these states do feel like a higher reality . and perhaps created by. or. more convincingly real . if absolute Unitary Being truly is more real than subjective or objective reality — more real. 63 . mass and solidity .’ Indeed. The findings in physics contradict the everyday notions of the world — its concrete reality and the existence of space. In fact. the reality of absolute Unitary Being.16 One fact that clearly should persuade us that what advanced meditators have experienced is real is that the reality they experienced and reported over the centuries correlate with scientific theories generated by cuttingedge physics today . however. . .’ and they come close to asserting that the SPeCT scan proves the existence of God. . .’ Those who have experienced advanced states of mystical unity. time. . .

are we wearing a series of ‘suits’ now? (What are normally referred to as higher energy ‘subtle bodies’ in metaphysical literature . as we get closer to reality’s ‘screen’ the image becomes pixelated — each pixel no larger than the Planck scale of 10 -33 cm . plants. planets. It’s as if reality is being projected from a cosmic lCd projector . information and entertainment? Who is watching all these movies? Who are you? Surface Realities If we imagine a ripple on the surface of a still pond we see a small circular ridge of water surrounded by ever-widening ridges until it merges with the surface of the pond . the second 64 .) do we return to the void by removing these suits? relative to the void are not all these universes ‘virtual’ reality? What is the purpose of these virtual reality movies — for experience. We see galaxies. the smallest circular ridge would describe the area of our 3d physical universe. stars. appear to be discrete and bounded by the Planck scale . one has to don specially-made costumes with the relevant sensors and motor response mechanisms attached . animals and ourselves on the universal screen .CHaPTer 8 Virtual reality all elements. from the metaphysical point of view. including spacetime. Is the Planck scale the ‘resolution’ of this cosmic projector? are multiple universes projected on multiple screens in a kind of multi-level Cineplex to generate the multiverse? To participate in virtual reality movies.

human beings. I saw. . . K C Cole.2 Physicist david Peat says that the universe we live in is a very fine correction . is modified by the negligible energy of the signal. which has a simple and symmetrical order. based on direct perception recalled an experience he had in 1946 . another. birds. The much greater energy of the television itself. sky. trees . which has a complicated form or (asymmetrical) order . and nuclear forces — would be trapped inside this surface . a surface studded with countless phenomenal universes. systems and mirage-like worlds . they would be waves vibrating in this surface . However. animals.VIrTUal realITy | Chapter 8 circular ridge (with lower amplitude) would describe the larger area of a higher energy universe. It takes only a negligible amount of energy or disturbance to stir the oceanic energetic void to generate universes . Only gravity could make waves in this deeper dimension . magnetism. Both physicist and metaphysicist agree that our universe exists only as a disturbance on the surface of a vast ocean — which appears to us. as a void .’ 3 Paramahansa yogananda. This negligible energy carries information which shapes the much greater energy generating pictures on the television screen . This observation supports metaphysical concepts of a discriminating mind ‘generating waves and in the process asymmetric universes’ in the perfectly symmetric void. according to string theory. as often I quieted the breath and the restless 65 . deeper dimension would lie beneath the surface. with a negligible amount of energy . according to reginald Cahill and Christopher Klinger of flinders University in adelaide. He asks us to think of a television set plugged into the wall with several amps of electricity at 110 volts entering the set . Metaphysical Literature In 1888 metaphysicist H P Blavatsky said ‘Space is the real world . in its depths. asks us to imagine our 3d universe as ‘the scum that forms on the surface of a pond . This negligible amount of energy in an individual’s brain generates pictures on the mental screen unconsciously . He says. are like storms that lash the ocean of light into waves of material forms — earth. ‘The breath and the restless mind. a scientist. like the water underneath the scum .in its bottomless depths as on its illusive surface. and the third ridge (with even lower amplitude) represents an even larger higher energy universe .1 Our universe is stuck at the edge of this deeper dimension . Superimposed on this energy is a virtually negligible energy — tiny fluctuations in current which are picked up by the antenna from the broadcast station . space and time and all the objects around us are no more than the froth on a deep sea of randomness .’ all the forces that make up our everyday universe — electricity.

a tiny island in a vast cosmic sea . the ‘disturbing manifestation of an external world’ arises because of ‘defilements’ in the mind . for example.] Surangama Sutra 7 The concept that the universe is a single bubble has tremendous implications: There may be many other bubbles out there. [emphasis added . the Bible states ‘Be still and know I am God . all of which could be other universes. ‘When they are stilled. calm oceans of water. but we will have no way of reaching them . There may be more universes than we ever contemplated. In fact. The ‘screen theory’ might describe a screen as something like a quantum computer.’9 Reality on Screens Based on the latest theories in modern physics. completely disconnected from ours . Tom Siegfried. also echoes the Sutra when he says that our universe could turn out to be ‘just a bubble of foam in an endless ocean. Nobel laureate Physicist leon lederman and david Schramm 8 Physicist. The true totality of creation would extend beyond human sensation and imagination . ‘One must conclude that a two-dimensional surface can contain all information concerning an entire three-space .’6 The Sutra points out: you have abandoned all the great. The situation can be compared with a hologram of a three dimensional image on a two-dimensional surface . Physicist lee Smolin says that if we assume that there are no things but only processes.’11 This leads us to the ‘screen theory’ in modern physics . pure. there remains only empty space. it cannot have more information then what is embedded in the 2d area . only screens exist . Gerard t’ Hooft says. Since the 3d hologram is projected from a 2d area.jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS mind. 66 . with one bit of memory for each pixel — each pixel being two Planck lengths on each side . I beheld the multitudinous waves of creation melt into one lucent sea …’ 4 according to the Surangama Sutra. a 3d hologram is projected from a small area in your 2d credit card .10 This betrays a characteristic of a hologram . this should hold for any two-surface that ranges to infinity . and clung to only one bubble which you regard as the whole body of water in all the hundreds of thousands of seas .’5 Of course. it appears that the information content in any part of our 3d universe does not depend on its 3d volume but on its 2d area . abiding in perfect unity .

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all that exists in the world are screens, on which the world is represented . [emphasis added .] lee Smolin, Physicist 12 you’re holding a magazine . It feels solid; it seems to have some kind of independent existence in space . ditto the objects around you—perhaps a cup of coffee, a computer . They all seem real and out there somewhere . But it’s all an illusion . Those supposedly solid objects are mere projections emanating from a shifting kaleidoscopic pattern living on the boundary of our Universe. The world is a hologram . [emphasis added .] J r Minkel, Science reporter, 2002 13

Metaphysical Literature
In 1946 Paramahansa yogananda explained: ‘Just as cinematic images appear to be real but are only combinations of light and shade, so is the universal variety a delusion . The planets, with their countless forms of life, are nothing but figures in a cosmic motion picture . This is the cosmic motion picture mechanism, producing the picture of your body . your form is nothing but light! The cosmic stem of light, blossoming as my body, seemed a divine reproduction of the light beams that stream out of the projection booth in a cinema to create the pictures on the screen .’14 a cinematic audience may look up and see that all screen images are appearing through the instrumentality of one imageless beam of light . The colorful universal drama is similarly issuing from the single white light of a Cosmic Source . Paramahansa yogananda, 1946 15 One question that scientists should ask themselves is how did yogananda come to this conclusion half a century before Science? This experience, like many other experiences of mystics, shows that a human being can experience reality directly and come to truths without the aid of advanced mathematics and scientific instruments . The deactivation of certain parts of the brain, whether deliberately through meditation or narcotic drugs; or because of some disease or lesion, may be the ‘trick .’


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One’s values are profoundly changed when he is finally convinced that creation is only a vast motion picture; and that not in it, but beyond it, lies his own reality . Paramahansa yogananda, 1946 16

Illusion of Spacetime
There is mounting evidence from modern physics that spacetime is an illusion . In the alain aspect experiment it was confirmed that two particles which are entangled affect each other even if they are light years apart . In John Wheeler’s experiment it was found that the history of a particle depended on what happened in the present . einstein remarked in one of his letters that ‘time is an illusion .’ Space too is an illusion . The term ‘illusion’ is used here in the sense that spacetime is relative to the observer’s frame of reference . It is very real to the observer from his local frame of reference but it is not definable globally . Henry Stapp notes that the central mystery of quantum theory is how information gets around so quickly . He asks, ‘How does the information about what is happening everywhere else get collected to determine what is likely to happen here?’ according to physicist Gary Zukau, the philosophical implication of quantum mechanics is that all of the things in our universe (including us) that appear to exist independently are actually parts of one all-encompassing organic pattern, and that no parts of that pattern are ever really separate from it or each other . In other words, none of the observed ‘parts’ are actually separate in space or time — it is a perfect unity . eastern mystics and western poets have been telling us for a long time that whether we speak of something and nothing, yin and the yang, the proton and electron, we are describing two parts of an undivided whole . Stanislav Grof according to lee Smolin physicists now regard time as nothing but a measure of change . Neither space nor time has any existence outside the system of evolving relationships that comprises the universe .17 former astronaut, edgar Mitchell, says that we inhabit a quantum world where nonlocal effects should be expected at all levels of functioning, not just as a curious artifact of the subatomic level of reality .18 The Surangama Sutra emphatically states ‘the perception of the eyes and the objects it sees and space itself, is devoid of location .’19


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…We conclude that the activity of cells in V5 must indeed depend partly on colour input and the activity of cells in V4 partly on motion . Visual consciousness must then be considered non-local . andrew duggins, Geraint rees, Chris frith, Neuroscientists, department of Cognitive Neurology, University College london different regions in the brain are responsible for different aspects of visual perception, yet consciousness comes up with a single image with all these different aspects coming together . How is this possible? This is often referred to as the ‘binding problem’ in consciousness . Perhaps the solution is in quantum physics . There are well-confirmed quantum-mechanical effects that have a non-local character — widely separated parts of a quantum system behave as though they are, connected in a mysterious way (as discussed in the alain aspect experiment, above) . These are known as einstein-Podolsky-rosen or ‘ePr’ effects . Neuroscientist andrew duggins has suggested that the binding problem in conscious perception may actually depend on non-local ePr effects . duggins has tested to see whether there are significant violations of ‘Bell’s inequalities’ (a mathematical procedure to test the hypothesis) in the formation of a mental image; indicating the presence of non-local ePr-type connections that would suggest that large-scale quantum effects are part of conscious perception . He concludes from his experiment that visual consciousness must be non-local . There is also evidence that indicates that subatomic particles constantly appear to be making decisions! More intriguing, these decisions seem to be based on decisions made elsewhere . These particles seem to know instantaneously what decisions are made elsewhere — even if it’s in another galaxy! Gary Zukau asks, ‘How can a subatomic particle over here know what decision another particle over there has made at the same time the particle over there makes it? a particle, as classically defined, is confined to a region in space . It is either here or there, but it cannot be both here and there at the same time . for a particle here to know what is going on over there while it is happening, it must be over there . But if it is over there, it cannot be here . If it is in both places at once, then spacetime must be an illusion because it does not seem to exist for these particles .’ Physicist Bernard Haisch invites us to ask ourselves how the universe of space and time would appear from the perspective of a beam of light . He explains that the laws of relativity are clear on this point . If you could ride a beam of light as an observer, all of space would shrink to a point, and all

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of time would collapse to an instant . In the reference frame of light, there is no space and time . If we look up at the andromeda galaxy in the night sky, we see light that from our point of view took 2 million years to traverse that vast distance of space . But to a beam of light radiating from some star in the andromeda galaxy, the transmission from its point of origin to our eye was instantaneous . He concludes, ‘There must be a deeper meaning in these physical facts, a deeper truth about the simultaneous interconnection of all things .’20 another source of evidence of the illusion of spacetime is the ‘uncertainty principle’ in quantum physics . as we approach an elementary particle to measure its precise momentum, its location becomes smeared all over spacetime . The particle does not allow you to pinpoint its precise location . Its evasiveness betrays the slippery and illusory nature of matter and space . Physicist david Bohm believes that an electron is an ensemble enfolded throughout the whole of space . When an instrument detects the presence of a single electron it is simply because one aspect of the ensemble has unfolded . When an electron moves, it is due to a continuous series of such unfoldments and enfoldments — in other words it pops in and out of the implicate void . When a particle appears to be destroyed it has merely enfolded back into the deeper order from which it sprang . The way an observer interacts with the ensemble determines which aspect unfolds and which remains hidden .21 according to the renowned neurosurgeon, Karl Pribram, there is no space and time, no causality, no matter and no mind in the holographic, enfolded order .22

Holographic Projections
renowned physicist, roger Penrose, notes that Science seems to be driven to deduce that if mass-energy is to be located at all, it must be in flat empty space — a region completely free of matter or fields of any kind! In these curious circumstances, he says, matter is either there or nowhere at all . This is a paradox . yet, it is a definite implication of what our best theories are telling us about the ‘real’ material of our world, he says .23 Michael Talbot says that creating the illusion that things are located where they are not is the quintessential feature of a hologram . This is because the hologram is a virtual image . In a holographic universe, location is itself an illusion . Just as an image of an apple has no specific location on a piece of holographic film; in a universe that is organised holographically things and objects have no definite location .24 Holographic images are generated from the constructive interference of two waves of coherent light . all the information about a 3-dimensional holographic object is captured in a 2d flat holographic template embedded with the interference pattern . The

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image of the object or any semblance of the image cannot be located on the flat holographic template . If the flat holographic template is broken into many pieces — each piece will still be able to generate a 3-dimensional hologram — although the image would not be as clear as when all the pieces are used . This is the whole-in-the-part or ‘WIP’ feature in holography . Since every piece contains every other piece (since it contains the whole), every piece is interconnected with every other piece . Hence, the examination of each piece will reveal the other pieces — ad infinitum . each piece is therefore ‘a composite of composites .’ John Taylor says if in our search for the ultimate constituents of nature, we always found that they have their own constituents, and they theirs, ad infinitum; then our whole Universe could then be considered constructed out of self-creating entities . It would then be truly relative: nothing would be fundamental; everything would create and in its turn be created out of everything else . 25 Some decades ago, physicist Geoffrey Chew provided the ‘bootstrap model’ of elementary particles, where no particle is considered ‘fundamental .’ Henry Stapp wrote for the atomic energy Commission,’…an elementary particle is not an independently existing entity . It is, in essence, a set of relationships that reach outward to other things .’ The isolation that we create is an idealization, and one point of view is that quantum mechanics allows us to idealize a photon from the fundamental unbroken unity so that we can study it . In fact, a photon seems to become isolated because we are studying it . according to Stapp, the physical world, according to quantum physics, is not a structure built out of independently existing entities, but rather a web of relationships between elements whose meanings arise wholly from their relationships to the whole — much like a hologram . Niels Bohr says that an independent status, in the ordinary physical sense, can be ascribed neither to the phenomena nor to observers . In other words, the world of seemingly independent objects, located within spacetime, cannot be as it appears . What we perceive to be physical reality is actually our cognitive deconstruction or suppression of complementary attributes of the symmetric void . Interconnectedness and the resulting lack of independence of any part of the whole (since it is always connected to the whole) is an inherent feature of a holographically generated multiverse .

Real-Time Holograms
digital holographic systems can generate holograms based on information fed into a computer, which need not be representations of existing objects but free creations of the mind . an analogy would be computer music or art . a musician may develop a musical manuscript using his laptop which

jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS

is then recorded onto a Cd (compact disc) . The ‘holes’ in the Cd do not at all resemble the music . Nevertheless, when a laser beam is bounced-off these holes and processed, music is heard . Similarly, when coherent light is bounced-off the holographically encoded ‘full-void,’ the holographic film of the multiverse, universes appear . Is it any coincidence that information in the brain itself is now thought to be holographically encoded?

Where are We?
If spacetime is an illusion, then where are we? according to physicists lederman and Schram, the universe is not rotating, there is no axis of rotation and the relatively uniform Hubble expansion tells us that ‘the universe has no centre — no preferred point . all points are equivalent .’26 God is a circle whose centre is everywhere, and circumference nowhere . empedocles (ancient Greek philosopher), Historical The understanding that all phenomena observed is relative to the frame of reference and that there is no ‘centre’ (i .e . no privileged frame of reference) to the universe betrays the fact that the multiverse is ‘embedded’ or as Bohm would have put it ‘enfolded’ in an implicate order — in this case the ‘full-void’ or the ‘event horizon’ of the multiverse .

The Void
The multiverse is often imagined by a discriminating mind as a ball sitting in a black void . However, Mellen-Thomas Benedict, a near death experiencer advises, ‘The void is inside and outside everything . you, right now even while you live, are always inside and outside the void simultaneously . you don’t have to go anywhere or die to get there . The void is the vacuum or nothingness between all physical manifestations . The void itself is devoid of experience . It is pre-life before the first vibration .’27 according to Buddhists 28, the widest ground of experience appears to be a pure, immediate presence before it becomes differentiated into any form of subject-object duality . Split second flashes of this open ground, which Buddhists have also called ‘primordial awareness,’ ‘original mind,’ ‘no-mind,’ are happening all the time, although one does not usually notice them . Siddhartha Gautama spoke about literally developing awareness in terms of fractions of a second, to awaken people to the fleeting glimpses of an open, precognitive spaciousness that keeps occurring before things get interpreted in a particular perspective . Hence, our perception actually oscillates between the void and the

the origins of objects within the multiverse are in fact everywhere in the full-void . While the flicker of the universal screen is imperceptible to most of us. If the universe is everywhere in the void. however. refresh rates that are too low cause annoying flicker that can be distracting to the viewer and can cause fatigue and eye strain . you would have immediate access to it . because it is based on the eye’s ability to notice the repainting of the image many times per second . suppress the dissonant attributes. It is a holographic projection emanating from the full-void . This deconstruction-construction process goes on all the time but is imperceptible to our ordinary consciousness . In our universe. This process is similar to what happens as you look at an image on your computer screen — which is actually regenerated by the system every split second .’ The refresh rate is important because it directly impacts the viewability of the screen image . however. (In other words. The relationships that we see in our everyday world of objects are only appearances . Universes and particles are everywhere and nowhere in the void — just as projected holograms are everywhere and nowhere on a holographic film . too….’ 29 73 . The full-void is holographically encoded — it is analogous to the holographic template or film .VIrTUal realITy | Chapter 8 manifested universe in split seconds as we deconstruct the void into pairs of opposites. We would be in the pure frequency domain .’ neurosurgeon Pribram proposes. he says . then put it back together again using the brain’s holistic operator to present an understandable world to ourselves . objects appear to be related and can be located in a local spacetime grid . The refresh rate necessary to avoid this varies with the individual. Though they have trouble describing it. In computer parlance. the rate of regeneration is called the ‘screen refresh rate . But the universe is not this kind of sphere . they are everywhere and nowhere . If you were on the crusty surface of the earth. What would that domain look like? ask the mystics . ‘we’d experience the interference patterns themselves . It is an optical illusion . If you were deep in the centre of the earth it would take a much longer time to access the atmosphere . ‘If we got rid of the lenses.) The everyday universe is therefore literally disappearing and manifesting every split second . it also means that the void can be accessed from any place in the universe . we are unconscious of the process — just as you are unconscious of the many complicated biochemical activities that are occurring in your internal organs as you read this book . This illusion is not only baffling to laymen and scientists but has even baffled mystics and advanced meditators who have confronted it throughout the ages — to the extent that some have said that ordinary consciousness generates illusions . advanced meditators have alluded to it . In a deeper context. Hence.

of the cortical lesion .1 In a sense. after conducting numerous experiments on the brains of animals.’ has been demonstrated over and over again1. according to Pribram. The brain does not store a literal reproduction of an object’s image but an abstract holographic code of wave-phase relationships like the overlapping patterns of light and shade on a holographic plate . the degree of retardation in learning or loss of memory following cortical lesions is proportional to the amount. suggesting that memories are stored in the form of holograms or holographic codes . represents the holographic film on which interference patterns are stored . according to Pribram. Instead. a deeper view would be that the holographic encoding occurs in the full-void or zero point field but these codes are inherent in the holograms that the full-void 74 . the brain.CHaPTer 9 Quantum-Holographic Theory of Perception Holographic Memory Storage in the Brain Karl lashley has pointed out. This fact. The retinal image is mapped onto the brain cortex which breaks down the image into various waveforms using a mathematical technique called ‘fourier transforms’ (as in holography) . and not the place. which he calls ‘cerebral mass action. that neither the learning nor the retention of a habit is localised in any one area of the cortex . the brain uses holographic-like code to encode incoming sensory information . There are no laser beams in the brain .

eugene Wigner (the 1963 Nobel laureate for Physics) exclaims in disbelief.2 The universe is a hologram that is generated by our active participation in it . yogananda. making it a superposed or ‘full-void . we are all simply wave-forms in an infinite ocean of waves . there remains only empty space .’ Through destructive interference. experimental findings suggest that it is always a wave .’ When weak measurements are made by our brains. The universe. when the Hindu mystic.’5 Hence. But how is this orchestrated? Generation of Universes by Minds Self-consistent universes appear as a result of cognitive suppressions by minds making measurements and breaking the symmetry of a perfectly symmetric void . our brains and bodies are all holograms emanating from the full-void . Swinney says that at the most fundamental level our bodies and the objects that we see are interference patterns caused by ‘the interaction of consciousness and wave fronts arising from fields of infinite possibility . ‘When they are stilled. It is no wonder then that the universe can be correlated so closely with mathematical models which are also created by our minds . ‘The enormous usefulness of mathematics in the natural sciences is something bordering on the mysterious and there is no rational explanation for it . quieted his breath and his restless mind (probably the ‘discriminating mind’ associated with the dominant left brain).’3 as previously noted. the waves collapse into complementary pairs of particle and antiparticle . When an electron isn’t being looked at. There is compelling evidence from the ‘double-slit’ and various other experiments that the only time quanta ever manifest as particles are when we are looking at them . This suggests that. If each particle is considered a pixel.4 and the Surangama Sutra is adamant that the ‘disturbing manifestation of an external world’ arises because of defilements in the mind (these defilements are also referred to as ‘samskaras’) . our brains (and its invisible superstructures) then break the perfect symmetry of plus 1s and minus 1s on this 75 . we can imagine an infinite perfectly symmetric 2d checkerboard screen of complementary pairs of pixels of plus 1s and minus 1s . the ‘empty-void’ collapses into an ocean of waves — with a positive and negative crest . Physicist lee Smolin says that it is not enough to say the world is a hologram — the world must be a network of holograms.QUaNTUM-HOlOGr aPHIC THeOry Of PerCePTION | Chapter 9 projects — which includes our brains and bodies . each of which contains coded within it information about the relationships between the others . This checkerboard is nearly perfectly symmetrical and contains complementary attributes. When strong measurements are made. at the most fundamental level. the multitudinous waves of creation melted into a lucent sea . activity in the brain has an effect on the universes perceived .

and if we drive the waves near that frequency. The standing wave is a pattern in the combined waves that may manifest on constructive interference or disappear on destructive interference of the waves . de Broglie showed that the discrete values of radii of Bohr’s orbits are a natural consequence of standing electron waves .jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS infinite checkerboard by suppressing dissonant attributes in each complementary pair during strong measurements . (The dissonance arises relative to the internal logic of each evolved brain) . Moving among all orbits would enable electrons to emit all energies of light . The second wave may actually be the first wave reflected off a detector . The idea that electrons can only occupy certain discrete energy levels was very perplexing to early investigators and to Niels Bohr himself becase the electron was considered to be a particle . In order to view the electron as a particle. Through constructive interference. another wave (travelling in the opposite direction) must be generated by a detector that interferes with this wave. standing waves can only exist for a discrete set of frequencies . But this does not happen . It would seem that an electron should be able to orbit around the nucleus at any radial distance .7 The fact that even a single photon or electron shows an interference pattern in a double-slit experiment adds to the evidence that a single electron is a wave . Why the electron occupies only discrete levels is better understood by considering the electron to be. 6 Gabriel lafrenière concludes that even magnetic and electric fields may be considered standing waves . some source must drive the waves at one of those frequencies . Since wavelength and frequency are related. Standing Waves Standing waves are formed whenever two waves with the same wavelength pass in opposite directions in some medium . which generates patterns in the void. Using the idea of interference. our brains (and its invisible superstructures) present to us a unique (asymmetric) ‘left-handed’ 3d world . not a particle. The waves change phase upon reflection from a fixed end . Only the reflected waves from mechanical 76 . according to Milo Wolff. is the result of standing waves . each standing wave pattern has its own natural frequency. They arise from the combination of reflection and interference such that the reflected waves interfere constructively with the original waves . the ‘particle’ is a spherical standing wave — a pattern generated by two identical spherical waves travelling radially in opposite directions . we will succeed in generating the corresponding standing wave . Constructive interference. to produce a standing wave . but a wave . The Schrödinger wave equation is in fact a linear combination of two waves travelling in opposite directions . That means that to create the standing wave pattern. There is a cascade of symmetry-breaking .

These standing waves form constructive interference patterns resulting in holograms of particles which form objects .QUaNTUM-HOlOGr aPHIC THeOry Of PerCePTION | Chapter 9 (linked to the minds of the experimenters) and biological detectors have the special ability to send out waves with the correct phase so that a constructive interference occurs . In other words.9 How does a human being perceive a universe? We can assume two waves — one emanating from the environment and one reflected off imprints (or samskaras) in the full-void and represented in our holographic higher energy bodies and brains . we (who are linked to one point in a complementary pair of points in the full-void by a spectrum of energetic bodies) participate with the light waves from the full-void in projecting the world we see — into infinity! The universal hologram is. and stretches out into the world around you . according to Gregory. The original wave and the reflected waves from detectors form standing waves . If you look at a distant star. emeritus Professor of neuropsychology at the University of Bristol. Plato was not entirely incorrect when he thought vision as working by light shooting out of the eyes to form optical images (analogous to the reflected modified wave) . A Quantum-Holographic Theory of Perception look around you now . the result of interactions or interlinking of one ‘point’ in the full-void with another — much like the interlinking of ‘gebits’ in Cahill and Klinger’s theory . rupert Sheldrake 8 rupert Sheldrake tells us that what you see is an image in your mind which is not inside your brain . The interlinking of gebits is equivalent to the interference of waves in the full-void . it results in destructive interference. your mind is extending over literally astronomical distances . Vision involves a two-way process. When the two waves (the incoming and modified reflected wave) interfere (as in a holographic machine). your mind is stretching out ten miles . which obscures other universes. and constructive interference patterns (i . your brain is inside your cranium . holograms) in the form of ‘standing waves’ — which are (in aggregate) perceived as objects and the ‘world’ by our senses . are the images of what you see inside of your brain? Or are they outside you — just where they seem to be? I suggest that your mind reaches out beyond your brain and into the world around you . according to physicist richard Gregory. 77 . an inward movement of light and an outward projection of images . therefore. If you look at a mountain ten miles away.e . It reaches out to touch what you see . your mind is extended in space.

after collapse. our senses .12 Reflected Waves of Conscious Entities according to the proposed quantum-holographic theory of perception. including all observers. the hologram is a compelling one for the brain’s magic show as it suggests how a finite lump of matter could contain an infinite mindscape . everett assumes that each part of the wave function corresponds to a definite state of awareness of the content of the observer’s memory . Hence. The reflected beam in a standard holographic machine is the wave that bounces off the holographic film in the machine . By analogy. which are then projected psychologically out into the external world — as hypotheses (generated by the brain) of what might be out there . but modified by the samskaras imprinted in our higher energy bodies . each point of view establishes a relationship between a state of awareness and the state of some part of the universe containing the observing instrument and the observed object . The segment of the wavefunction that collapses is therefore determined by the content of our memory directly or indirectly through our interactions with an observing system — in our case. each mind. the original waves (from the environment) bounce off the holographic memory content of the observer (ultimately embedded in the full-void) as reflected waves — equal and opposite to the original waves.jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS light enters the eyes to form optical images. there is a cycle of thoughts and perceptions which reinforces a particular reality in the conscious left brain . becomes aware of only one facet of this multidimensional reality . however. when the two waves intersect. standing waves are formed . The whole universe.10 Metaphysicist I K Taimni says that an individual’s boundless ‘mental space’ is projected from the centre of his consciousness as an infinite sphere of three dimensions . 78 . exists objectively in a multidimensional reality — according to (Hugh) everett’s ‘Many-Minds’ theory . the lens of the biological eye facilitates the conscious capture of retinal images of these holograms of objects and sends them to the brain for further processing and holographic storage (in the void and as represented in the brain) — which in turn determines the nature of the future holograms it perceives . any part of the multidimensional reality generates a perception only in relationship to ‘frames’ constituted of the memory of the observer .13 The Content of Our Memories determine the Reflected Waves The reflected wave is a wave reflected off the holographic ‘film’ represented in the unconscious of a conscious being — which constitutes the memory of the observer .11 Judith Hooper and dick Teresi say that even if it is only a metaphor.

even when there is none’ laments Gazzaniga . a brain can cope with these same events better. Janet Metcalfe of Columbia University and Margaret funnell of dartmouth College found that the two brains differ in their ability to process new data . as confirmed in an experiment done at the University of California at Berkeley by raymond Chiao — suggesting that a collapsed wave function can be restored by erasing (historical) information . In the desert religions (i . It has already been noted by Newberg and d’aquili that activities in the verbal-conceptual association areas of the brain are drastically reduced during advanced meditation . This was confirmed in an experiment conducted by anton Zeilinger . elizabeth Phelps at New york University. erasing information about the path of a photon restores wavelike behavior. ‘The left hemisphere seeks explanations for why events occur . In an experiment done at the University of rochester it was found that information rather than direct intervention destroys wavelike behavior . When presented with new 79 .15 But there is an advantage in such a system — by going beyond the simple observation of events and asking why they happened. This collapses the wave-function trapping the locus of awareness of observers in this or that universe . Christianity. using electronics . Conceptualisations are generally considered a hindrance in meditation . deconceptualisation and deconstruction of theoretical constructs (which reduces ‘useful information’) is an integral part of Zen meditation strategy and in many other meditative techniques found in various religions . Michael Gazzaniga reminds us that the interpretive mechanism of the left hemisphere is always hard at work.e . The left brain is a ‘theory maker’ generating vast amounts of useful information throughout our life . Islam and Judaism) faith is emphasised in the face of conflicting information which nullifies ‘useful’ information .QUaNTUM-HOlOGr aPHIC THeOry Of PerCePTION | Chapter 9 The Role of Useful Information Physicists now believe that it is the generation of useful information by a detector in an experiment which collapses the wave function .14 ‘White noise’ is used in modern meditation techniques to ‘scramble’ and ‘neutralize’ conceptualisations. should they happen again — helping the life form to cope in a particular location of a particular universe .000 years old . Left Brain — A Generator of Useful Information We know that traditional meditation techniques tend to reduce activities normally associated with the left brain . Conceptualisations represent ‘useful information’ which generates quantum decoherence . This is explicitly stated in Buddhist and Hindu scriptures and commentaries more than 2. seeking the meaning of events — and churning out conceptual frameworks and ideologies . It is constantly looking for order and reason. On the other hand.

Physicists tell us the more useful information a universe contains. dogmatism and doctrines in religion also represent ‘useful information’ in that they have unique solutions . freezes or quantizes dynamic reality within a spacetime grid . fred alan Wolf argues that according to a new interpretation of quantum physics. observation and awareness have a far greater effect on the physical world than was previously suspected . the left hemisphere generates many false reports . figuratively speaking. When split-brain patients are given such tests. according to Gazzaniga . They effectively confine us to particular universes (within the multiverse) . in fact. A Cloud of Unknowing Hooper and Teresi note that it is interesting that the path to God (in mystical traditions) seems to be a negative path. When questioned. The information in a particular universe interacts with elementary particles to correlate it to a particular universe.jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS information. Intent.’ The left and right brains are. biochemical or psychological reasons) tussles between the two brains or hemispheres can be expected . In split brain patients. the more closed and partitioned-off it becomes from other universes . Why the Devil Won’t Go Away The term ‘veridical’ is defined in the dictionary as ‘truthful’ and ‘not illusory . in a sense. This implies that there is a deep connection between the observer and the observed . through our powers of observation. all we can do is alter the way we experience reality . the right and left brains operate different personalities and often do battle with each other . So deep.’ This appears to echo what genuine mystics have been saying about their experiences and it is also interesting that Jesus (of Nazareth) characterised the devil as a ‘liar . according to him. people usually remember much of what they experience . a path of ‘unknowing . But the right brain does not. allowing the meditator to be in a superposed state for long periods of time . If a quantum 80 . deconceptualisation reduces ‘useful information’ and enhances quantum coherence. intent operates in the physical world by altering the observed state of that world . actually modifies and alters the course of the physical world and causes things to occur that would not normally occur . so that we see and measure ‘standard’ particles in our universe . Where the integration of the two hemispheres is weak (due to physical. they also usually claim to remember things that were not truly part of the experience . it provides a much more veridical account. This is where intent comes in . Concepts and information. the devil and God in us . that we cannot really separate them .’ all the methods of tapping into the ‘kingdom of God’ within the brain involve getting rid of something — to disassociate and disentangle from everyday concepts .

in order to reach the highest frequency quantum-like ‘causal world. Physicist 21 81 . just as a man can close his eyes and realise that he exists. we could say vigilantly. Jacob Bekenstein. another experiment that confirmed this phenomenon was reported in the popular science magazine ‘discover .QUaNTUM-HOlOGr aPHIC THeOry Of PerCePTION | Chapter 9 system is monitored continuously. but rather with information exchange among physical processes . even though his body is invisible to his physical eyes and is present only as an idea (or useful information) to him .’ we would have to possess such tremendous powers of concentration that. not even with spacetime. if you closed your eyes and visualised the physical and higher energy universes in all their vastness. This was confirmed in 1989 when physicist Wayne Itano and his colleagues at the National Institute of Standards and Technology in Boulder. If by this superhuman concentration you succeeded in converting or resolving the physical and higher energy universes with all their complexities into sheer ideas. observed 5. according to fred alan Wolf . Colorado. If so.18 Physicist lee Smolin says that space is nothing but a way of talking about all the different channels of communication that allow information to pass from one observer to another . but information.19 Hawking points out rather elusively that it may not be only energy. that leaks between (parallel) universes .000 beryllium atoms confined in a magnetic field and then exposed to radio waves . The holographic principle is the ultimate realisation of the notion that the world is a network of relationships . you would realise that they exist only as ideas .’ 16 Information — the Stuff of the Universe a causal bodied being remains in the blissful realm of ideas .20 a final theory must be concerned not with fields. The relationships revealed by this principle involve nothing but information . information is the stuff the world is made of . it will do practically anything . In fact the ‘ground state’ that Hawking refers to may be something in addition to a state of energy — it may be a ground state of information and order. he would then reach the causal world and stand on the borderline of fusion between mind and matter . The history of a universe is nothing but the flow of information . Paramahansa yogananda 17 according to the mystic Paramahansa yogananda. There one perceives everything as forms of consciousness or information.

e . Wheeler calls his idea ‘the it from bit . various theorists are trying to recast quantum physics in terms of information theory . and upside-down . The extractions are based on mathematical laws which are inherent in our minds . There are two retinal images which are distorted. which is the fundamental currency of computing and communications . a former Wheeler student who is pursuing the ‘it-from-bit’ concept . timeless and universal nature of these concepts and on the fact that their laws are independent of those who discover them . already these investigators have found that Heisenberg’s uncertainty principle (which is a bound on information). Brains Generate Realities by Generating Information The resolving power of the eye is limited and non-uniform . ’This is in some sense a participatory universe.’ he says . The Participatory Universe The most profound lesson of quantum mechanics. We isolated this self-consistent universe from the superposed void. the answer to a yes-or-no question. Why (do) such precise mathematical laws play such an important role in the behavior of the physical world? How it is that perceiving beings can arise from out of the physical world and are able to ‘create’ mathematical concepts out of some kind of mental model?’22 It is proposed that the observer (with his limited mind) isolates a logically self-consistent asymmetric universe from the superposed symmetric void . saccading from point to point in the visual field three or four times a second .23 Outside the high-resolution foveal region. The basis of reality may not be the quantum. This solves the mystery of why our universe appears to follow mathematical laws in such a precise way . wave-particle duality and nonlocality can be formulated more powerfully in the context of information theory. ‘What right do I have to say that the Platonic [mathematical] world is actually a “world” that can exist in the same sense in which our world exists? It may well seem that it is a rag-bag of abstract concepts that mathematicians have come up with from time to time . according to William Wootters of Williams College. which despite its elusiveness is still a physical phenomenon. Wheeler remarks. yet its existence rests on the profound. the retina is nearly colour-blind and its powers of discrimination are severely limited .’ following Wheeler’s lead. 82 .jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS The Platonic Universe roger Penrose asks. but the bit (i . useful information). just as other observers have extracted their own selfconsistent universe from the superposed void . tiny. is that physical phenomena are somehow defined by the questions we ask of them . The eye is in constant motion.

on the basis of this fragmented and discontinuous information. represented in our bodies. Theoretically. Mainstream Science proposes that the brain integrates the patchy and fragmentary bits of information on the retina available in successive fixations into a stable. But are our biochemical brains able to do this on its own? The brain is able to do this only because it has access to the holographic template that generated the world unconsciously in the first place and now allows it to reconstruct the world that is presented to consciousness . The content of the memory represented in each body (and embedded in the full-void) determines the types of universes experienced or perceived . In other words it merely mediates our contact with this projected world . complex and in high resolution? How is it that we come to enjoy such richly detailed snapshot-like visual experiences when our actual direct contact with the world in the form of information on the retina is so limited? This is the problem faced by visual theory . the reflected waves from the content of our memories. It allows us to move our holographic body within the hologram of the world. which inadvertently develops a sense of self separate from the world because of this . the data made available to the retina takes the form of a succession of alternating snapshots and grey-outs . We need our biological eyes primarily to direct our conscious attention to different areas of the unconsciously projected world . 83 . participate with the original waves emanating from the environment to create an infinite mindscape of standing waves which form constructive interference patterns . electromagnetic waves can propagate to infinite distances . are we able to enjoy the impression of seamless consciousness of an environment that is detailed. Hence. continuous. How. This projected self is an integral part of the projected world and cannot be separated from it . detailed model or representation .QUaNTUM-HOlOGr aPHIC THeOry Of PerCePTION | Chapter 9 as a result.

the three quarks that make up the proton contribute only 3% of the mass of the proton . would be smaller than a sugar cube . while the nucleus. 99% nothing . atoms are. However. which is composed of neutrons and protons. which in turn are composed of quarks . then the electrons would be dust particles floating around at all distances inside the building. Most of the mass of the atom is in this tiny nucleus. Nirvana Sutra 1 leadbeater and Besant. mass-less photons and neutrinos would dominate .2 In other words. If you took an inventory of particles making up the universe. for one who sees there is nothing . based on metaphysical evidence. Saying attributed to Siddhartha Gautama. empty space is full and the material universe is literally nothing . you would have to weigh each atom of your body . two leading metaphysicists of the twentieth century. If you were to examine where your body’s mass came from. however. If an atom were the size of a huge cathedral. The rest is in the form of tension-energy 84 . or centre of the atom. Before you dismiss this as gobbledygook. explained in 1919 that. consider the following . we realise that it is the apparent void which is solid and that the specks are but bubbles (of nothing) in it .C H a P T e r 10 The Insubstantial Universe The truth is not easy to see. instead of thinking of the ultimate constituents of matter as solid specks floating in a vacuum.

THe INSUBSTaNTIal UNIVerSe | Chapter 10

among the quarks . So even the nucleus of the atom is close to nothing! That means you are basically nothing . according to physicist John Hitchcock, all existent stuff in the universe pays for itself by being in gravitational relationship to the rest of the universe . The cosmos, he says, adds up to nothing — the observed negative forms of energy (gravity) and positive forms of energy (mass and radiation) balance to nearly zero in our entire observable cosmos . 3 david Bohm echoes what leadbeater and Besant said in 1919 by giving an example . He says, according to quantum theory, a crystal at absolute zero allows electrons to pass through it without scattering; they go through as if the space was empty . If the temperature is raised, however, inhomogeneities appear; and these scatter electrons . If one were to use such electrons to observe the crystal, only the inhomogeneities would be visible . It would then appear that the inhomogeneities exist independently and that the main body of the crystal was sheer nothingness . Bohm explains, ‘What we perceive with the senses as empty space is actually a plenum — the ground for existence of everything, including ourselves . Things that appear to our senses are generated and sustained by the plenum, into which they must ultimately vanish . Space, which has so much energy, is full rather than empty .’ 4 Mass is a deficiency in an otherwise full space… what we think of as empty space is actually full . …matter, mass, gravity and other forces, essentially all of the features of the universe we know, are deficiencies in a full space, not additions to an empty space . The world we know is not more than nothing, it is less than everything . Gevin Giorbran, Physicist While Bohm arrived at his conclusions based on scientific experiments and mathematical arguments, leadbeater arrived at it by direct perception . These two approaches — one theoretic and the other experiential has been used by scientists and mystics, respectively . How is it that the scientist and mystic, using different techniques, have arrived at similar conclusions? There are numerous correlations in their independent findings — especially in relation to fundamental issues i .e . not whether Jupiter is the largest planet in the Solar System or whether the earth is flat or spherical; but whether there is a fundamental constituent in the universe, whether space is empty, whether space and time are illusions . Many of the mundane questions that scientists ask may be irrelevant to metaphysicists . This is because many metaphysicists were and are con85

jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS

vinced that the universe is (in the final analysis) a mind-created insubstantial universe . furthermore, the mind breeds knowledge — churning out this or that concept or theory which in itself has no end . In these conditions, it would be futile to hold on to theories the way (current) scientists do and to be fixated on material objects as if they existed independently of the mind . Scientific experiments are confirming that photons, neutrons and even whole atoms act sometimes like waves, sometimes like particles, but they actually have no definite form until they are measured . The shock of matter being largely empty space may have been extreme enough . But with quantum physics, even this tenuous result would be superseded by the atom itself not really being anything that exists until it is measured . John Horgan, Quantum Philosophy

The Illusion of Mass
Matter resists acceleration not because it possesses some innate thing called mass, but because the zero point field exerts a force whenever acceleration takes place . Mass is, in effect, an illusion . There exists a background sea of quantum light filling the universe which generates a force that opposes acceleration when you push on any material object . That is why matter seems to be the solid, stable stuff that we and our world are made of . Bernhard Haisch, Physicist, 2001

according to Bernard Haisch, alfonso rueda and H e Puthoff (in their paper, ‘Beyond e=mc2,’) physical theory need no longer suppose that there is something called mass having an innate property, inertia, that resists acceleration . What is really happening, instead, is that an electromagnetic force acts on the charge inside matter to create the effect of inertia . The presence of charge and its interaction with the zero point field creates the forces we all experience and attribute to the existence of matter . The interpretation would apply even to an electrically neutral particle such as the neutron, because the neutron, at the most fundamental level, is thought to be made up of smaller particles called quarks, which do carry electric charge . Haisch asks, ‘Is matter an illusion? Is the universe floating on a

THe INSUBSTaNTIal UNIVerSe | Chapter 10

vast sea of light, whose invisible power provides the resistance that gives to matter its feeling of solidity? The mystics seemed to have already known the answer . long concentration on the liberating spiritual eye has enabled the yogi to destroy all delusions concerning matter and its gravitational weight; he sees the universe as essentially an undifferentiated mass of light . Paramahansa yogananda, Mystic, 1946

Light Play
The solid, stable world of matter appears to be sustained at every instant by an underlying sea of quantum light . Bernhard Haisch, Physicist, 2001

It is the underlying realm of light that is the fundamental reality propping up our physical universe, says Haisch . yogananda already came to this conclusion more than fifty years ago, through direct perception: My physical body lost its grossness; I felt a floating sensation; the weightless body shifted slightly to the left and right . I looked around the room; the furniture and walls were as usual, but the little mass of light had so multiplied that the ceiling was invisible . ‘This is the cosmic motion-picture mechanism,’ a voice spoke, ‘your form is nothing but light!’ I gazed at my arms and moved them back and forth, yet could not feel their weight . The cosmic stem of light, blossoming as my body, seemed a divine reproduction of the light beams that stream out of the projection booth in a cinema house . as the illusion of a solid body was completely dissipated, my realisation deepened that the essence of all objects is light . Paramahansa yogananda, 1946 8

The Illusion of Things
elementary particles are processes carrying little bits of information between events at which they interact, giving rise to new processes . although

This is not much different from what the Hindus noted almost two thousand years ago: at dawn all things manifest Springing forth from the Unmanifest and then at nightfall they dissolve again Into the Unmanifest 88 . and the whole physical realm would simply cease to exist . in reality they are processes since they are composed of elementary particles — like a candle flame in a windless room which appears to us like an independent object until we realise that it is actually changing every second — or the ‘static’ image of an object on your computer screen which is actually being regenerated at minute discrete intervals of time by the underlying system . they are not themselves matter — just as bubbles in water are not water but are places in which water is absent . They speculate that there may be a progressive diminution in the size of the bubbles in successive universes . the table and a computer. which just as quickly vanish into nothingness again . astronomers have calculated that the age of our universe is 13 . the bubbles (and therefore matter) disappear . that the first stars lit up just 200 million years after the cosmos was born. spacetime is continually fluctuating — creating momentary bubbles of matter. and that it will expand forever at an accelerated pace. the bubbles will fall apart again.jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS there appears to be static objects around us — the chair. When symmetry is restored.7 billion years. basically nothing . If this force is withdrawn even for a single instant. they bubble everywhere as a kind of frothy quantum foam . thinning and cooling-off until it eventually disappears into nothingness . They say that though the bubbles are the basis of all matter. a scientist confirms what leadbeater and Besant observed in 1919 — what we now call the ‘quantum foam . 9 They said that the ‘ultimate physical atom’ is nothing but the manifestation of a force which brings together fourteen thousand million bubbles (of nothing) in a particular form . The ‘substance’ of the material universe is. ‘at the smallest level of space-time-matter.’10 Origins and Future of our Universe — the Big Ripple Currently.’ danah Zohar says. Such bubbles do not appear only at one place. Quantum Foam In 1919 (years before quantum mechanics was developed by Schrödinger and Heisenberg) leadbeater and Besant explained that bubbles exist at the most fundamental level of spacetime . therefore. The interiors of these bubbles are void (of water) .

The reaction results. void state . Before the complete dissolution of our current universe. at dawn of day it rises up again . as the dark expanse in our classical universe expands (as scientists now predict). This sequence will be repeated over and over again until the local multiverse finally dissolves into the implicate order of the unmanifest.12 The reverse sequence (back to the void) is therefore a gradual withdrawal from lowerenergy universes which transform into higher energy universes — as a result of the transformation of lower-energy particles to higher energy particles . and then reappear . so does each lower energy universe . Similarly. the manifestation of universes oscillates ‘within’ the void . intelligent beings from our current universe would have already abandoned their bodies corresponding to the current universe and would now operate in their new bodies in a higher-energy universe . according to metaphysicist leadbeater. perfectly symmetric. first. The colors disappear if the dishes are shaken. The Bhagavad-Gita 11 In the ‘Big ripple’ the universes (the physical and higher energy universes) will dissolve one by one — in their order of subtlety into the void — just as chemicals disappear into the implicate order in the BZ (BelousovZhabotinsky) experiment . it would also mean that higher energy universes (which are dark or invisible from our perspective. BZ Experiment In the BZ experiment an acid was mixed with bromine producing fascinating geometric patterns such as concentric circles and archimedean spirals that propagated across the medium . in the formation of colored spots — which then grow into a series of expanding concentric rings or spirals . Just as each lower energy body comes to the end of its life and dissipates. from the perspective of an inhabitant in the lower energy universe. lower-energy particles in our universe are secondary manifestations of higher energy particles . currently) are also expanding . Dissolution of the Manifest Multiverse into the Void Interestingly enough. however.THe INSUBSTaNTIal UNIVerSe | Chapter 10 yes! This whole host of beings Comes ever anew to be. The waves continue until the reagents are consumed . the lower energy universe would appear to be disappearing into nothingness 89 . at nightfall It dissolves away — all helpless. This experiment provided scientists undeniable evidence that chemical reactions could oscillate and are not halted by equilibrium thermodynamic behavior .

’ it will be the void that survives through the eternities to come. as all the rest of the material world flashes out of existence . universes manifest when there is a break in the symmetry of the full void — moving away from equilibrium. the equilibrium state appears to be “dormant. the sequence reverses and everything returns to equilibrium .” strictly speaking.e . This is consistent with twentieth century’s ‘chaos theory . the whole universe is absorbed and stays in dormancy in unmanifest condition . This reverse process is gradual . rajas and tamas. all the three fundamental constituents of Hindu metaphysics. when there is a break in symmetry) and creation starts again . dissolution is the reverse process . Gross matter becomes subtler and subtler . which is neither static nor dynamic’ — the attribute and its contrary attribute are equiposed . The recent discovery that the universe started expanding and is heading to a local valley means that one day the universe will dissolve .14 The whole universe might have a huge number of vacuum states. This condition continues until the equilibrium of the three constituents is disturbed (i .’ after an unimaginably long period of time. astronomer Sten Odenwald points out. according to advaita Vedanta. according to ‘advaita Vedanta’ religious philosophy.e . and it might be possible to jump suddenly from one to the other . Physicist 15 90 . sattavas. i . allowing ‘phenomenal life’ and complexity to manifest . Creation is the manifestation of the previously unmanifest. In this condition. John Barrow.’ says N C Panda . neither the terms “dormant” nor “active” can be applied to it . It is an ineffable state. finally.13 In other words. Odenwald warns us that ‘in the end. ‘Space is a positive entity . are equiposed (restoring symmetry) . It is converted into particles and particles are reconverted into it. ‘although.jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS because the higher energy particles would be invisible (or dark) to the inhabitant . the sequence of dissolution is the reverse of creation .

When taken to the extreme. this mechanism. andrew Newberg and eugene d’ aquili. would erase the mind’s sense of self and undo any conscious awareness of an external world . Neuroscientists 1 Newberg and d’ aquili hypothesise that the brain possesses a neurological mechanism for self-transcendence . that the mind’s machinery of transcendence may in fact be a window through which we can glimpse the ultimate realness of something that is truly divine .C H a P T e r 11 The Really astonishing Hypothesis are these (mystical) unitary experiences merely the result of neurological function or are they genuine experiences which the brain is able to perceive? Could it be that the brain has evolved the ability to transcend material existence and experience a higher plane of being that actually exists? Our research has left us no choice but to conclude that the mystics may be on to something. a clear and vivid consciousness of everything as an undifferentiated whole . between the limited personal self and the 91 . This awareness would be neuro-biologically incapable of differentiating between subject and object. They describe the ultimate transcendent state an ‘absolute unitary’ state — a state of pure awareness. they believe.

what would our religions be like? If we had three brain hemispheres instead of two. no beginning and no end . almost everything we win from the ‘void and formless infinite’ is caught in this reductive structure . then physical reality must also be both idea-like and matter-like . 4 Ornstein says that the existence of such different ways to account for the world even when the rat evolved makes it clear that the division in the human brain into different modes of processing is not just a matter of upbringing nor is it a division related largely to language versus no-language . Just as the physical brain facilitates the generation of a 3d space. ‘eitheror’ rather than ‘both-and’ logic) . space. material world . our geometries. ‘So why do we not see it as idea-like?’ he asks . our mythologies. since the wave-function is thought to be a complete description of physical reality and since what the wave function describes is both idea-like and matter-like. strictly threedimensional in its spatial constructions. These rat studies and 92 .e . at its best. no substance. and the sequential and temporal processors in the left one . concluded that in rats the parallel and spatial processors of information is localised in the right brain. and number be radically different?2 It has already been discussed in the author’s book ‘Our Invisible Bodies’ that different bodies (which are ensembles of sensory systems) allow the observer to experience different universes generated by the different brains . 3 according to Gary Zukau. according to david Kaiser. Evolution of the Divided Brain Bianki.jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS external. these higher energy body-brains facilitate the generation of spacetime with a higher number of dimensions . rodney Bomford says that the movement from eternity to temporality is a movement out of the (symmetric) unconscious towards (asymmetric) consciousness and logic (i . reducing input from the environment to components and sequences is a result of the left side’s form of organisation . It would perceive and interpret reality as a formless unified whole. def Jehning says that our consciousness is. time. We are so immersed in the three-dimensional make-up of our perceptions that we naively believe that reality itself is three-dimensional . Jehning believes that the fact that cutting-edge physics is telling us that reality is infinite and multidimensional forces us to a radical revision of the alleged superiority of (left brain) consciousness . would our philosophies. with no limits. who conducted experiments with rats. our notions of causality. and its temporal organisation is linear . Teresi and Hooper ask. Perhaps it’s because we have entrenched ourselves in a left brain reality . ‘If our brains were a different size and shape.

our divided cortex appeared with the first mammals . a kind of amnesia sets in . subject to cycles and dualities. the subject’s left-analytic mode usually has difficulty or cannot express in words what the right-holistic mode experienced during the dreams .THe Really aSTONISHING HyPOTHeSIS | Chapter 11 other studies like them. rodents. he concludes. mainly because a different cognitive style using images (associated with the right brain) is being employed . including the lower brainstem and the thalamus . Upon awakening. dream researchers regard the altered state of consciousness during dreams as very mysterious. and monkeys .] andrew Newberg and eugene d’ aquili 7 Our left and right brains allow us to view reality in two different modes — the left brain presenting it as this or that universe. Different Brains — Different Realities It would appear that brief encounters with the right-cognitive style shows that another reality can exist in which an entirely different type of thinking dominates . it appears that the inventive and interpreting left hemisphere has a conscious experience very different from that of the truthful. makes it clear that there is a fundamental division in an animal’s contact with the world . according to Iaccino. The division is based on a way of approaching the outside world that evolution worked out long before it thought of us.] Michael Gazzaniga 8 Both hemispheres of the brain are capable of some kind of awareness. and the (advanced and isolated) right brain presenting it to us as an attributeless void . according to david Kaiser. literal right brain . according to him. lateral differentiation in neural organisation and function may occur in the earliest brain structures. each of these ways of organising reality must have had immediate (evolutionary) advantages . [emphasis addded . [emphasis addded . [emphasis addded .] James Iaccino 6 after many years of fascinating research on the split brain. but their methods of experiencing and expressing it are very different . 93 . recent research has demonstrated that the two cerebral hemispheres are laterally specialized in species as diverse as birds. 5 The presence of hemispheric specialization in groups with such varied evolutionary histories may be explained by parallel evolution from common selective pressures .

linear consciousness. Were the Buddhists. If the development of the appositional. top-down processing skills of the right brain (and its invisible superstructure in higher energy bodies) is taken to the extreme. Hindus and Taoists right in rejecting the slower left (tortoise) brain method to embark on developing the right (hare) brain to perceive reality directly and in a shorter time? The Surangama Sutra states all phenomena and their developments are simply manifestations generated by the mind . here?) If indeed our view of the empty multiverse is a cognitive construction. all causes and effects.jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS Advanced Development of the Right Brain or the Holistic Operator Iaccino says that one characteristic not present in right-holistic processing is the temporal ordering of elements . and time is considered ‘an ontological absurdity . from great universes to fine dust come into apparent existence only by means of a discriminating mind . is only now throwing up models of reality described in mystical and metaphysical literature centuries and even millenniums ago . it logically follows that every universe and its anti-universe would simply present a void to the right brain’s processing style . or the physical changes of the illusory world . from super universes to an attributeless void (the list of correlations is growing). from the holographic principle to screens. as pointed out by Gary Zukau and Siddhartha Gautama. 10 (are we talking about the development of the left brain consciousness. what do you think you will perceive? Would you see or experience anything? The fact that mystics and serious metaphysicists describe reality in remarkably similar ways as physicists today. The holistic and parallel process94 .’ He goes on to say that this type of thinking is reflected across many eastern cultures where no distinction is made between past and present. supervised by the left brain.’ 9 If your right brain is in a advanced stage of development (and your left brain activity is largely suppressed). The binary splitter (identified by Newberg and d’aquili) would be rendered ineffective . it throws up an interesting question: does the advanced development of the right brain with its parallel processing of attributes allow you to perceive reality directly? The slower and more arduous process through the scientific method. rather.’ He observes that the right brain’s ‘nonlinear mode’ is cultivated deliberately in eastern mystical traditions for the purpose of arriving at a ‘more accurate picture of reality not based on time. ‘a present centredness or timeless experience has been associated with this cognitive mode in which all events are perceived to occur immediately and simultaneously . Merely suppressing left brain activities will not lead to ‘enlightenment’ (as it is known in eastern religions) . from impermanence to insubstantiality of the universe. then the left brain must be primarily implicated for this construction .

while abiding in a symmetric void . coordinated movements. However. with his limited senses. but not active . and oral repetitions . But are mystics who talk of a spaceless and timeless void hallucinating? Harman and rheingold argue that since Science tells us that the universe. scientists believe that our senses can bring us just such a perception of ‘unbroken wholeness’ of reality .’12 They say our normal mental conditioning. a person who has developed both brains to very high levels leads a two-fold existence — functioning rationally in an asymmetric universe. ‘…this ecstasy could be induced in the ordinary man in a relatively short time by rhythmic exercises. frequencies) to present a picture of reality simplified enough for us to understand . mystics and shamans have shown us . The VCaa. according to Newberg and d’ aquili. however. alan Watts points out that there is a tendency to impose too quickly the conventional structures like space. We learn to fit ourselves into the world by learning to perceive or not perceive whatever the adults around us perceive .’ Meditation methods generally discourage both mental verbalizations and conceptualisations . control of breath.e . Harman and rheingold say it is these ‘left brain tendencies which come between us and any direct perception of the fundamental unity . It is believed that our mindbrain tunes into selected ‘vibratory nodes’ (i . alert. occipital and temporal lobes . is a ‘nervous system devoid of mental-conceptual activity…in a state of quiescence.THe Really aSTONISHING HyPOTHeSIS | Chapter 11 ing abilities of the right brain (and its invisible superstructure in higher energy bodies) have to be highly developed over time before the experience of wholeness and emptiness is experienced . we should not be forced to resort to theories involving hallucinations to account for the numerous records of individuals perceiving it accurately . of which we are a part.11 In fact. could somehow come to perceive that unity directly and unaided . is 95 . involving posture. These functions are found in the verbal-conceptual association area (VCaa) which sits at the junction of the parietal. many will still find it difficult to believe that man. The major precondition. time and the subject-object dichotomy . awake. say Harman and rheingold. The left brain has to keep up with the development of the right brain in order to integrate the ‘wisdom’ generated by the right brain into its own framework . that according to abraham Maslow most people report having had a profound sense of what has been called ‘unitive consciousness’ at some time in their lives . is certainly not an insurmountable barrier to the direct perception of reality. dr robert Benson observed that.’ In fact. is unitary in nature. this barrier is so easy to overcome. according to one group of Harvard researchers. as yogis.

we will experience different realities . Science has only officially begun to recognise it since it became possible to reproduce the experience under laboratory conditions. the naming of objects.14 3 Modes of Perception — 3 Modes of Reality It appears that based on whether we are using serial or parallel perception or a hybrid. The second will experience a superposition of an attribute and its contrary attribute . says Maxwell Cade. It is also involved in conceptual comparisons. The first may observe an attribute . Harman and rheingold also point out that although mystics have been telling us how to achieve this state of higher awareness for thousands of years. The extreme scenarios are as follows: • a universe — Where each attribute in a pair of complementary competitive pair is observed separately over time — a serial perception associated with the left brain . Which state we experience is relative to our orientation .’ according to Michael Talbot. and table lamps might not even exist or at least not exist in the same way we believe it exists . the more often the individual experiences states of higher awareness .13 The more meditation is practiced. a ‘frequency domain’ that was transformed into the world as we know it only after it entered our senses . mountain vistas. the objective reality — the world of coffee cups. What was out there was really a vast. 3 observers would ‘experience’ 3 different modes (of reality) — observing the same phenomenon . • a full-void — where all complementary attributes (whether competitive or co-operative) are superposed — perception and non-perception are superposed . To have a clear perception that the universe is all of a piece can be so profound that it changes the person’s character and his world view forever . elm trees. the ordering of opposites.jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS responsible for the generation of abstract concepts and relating them to words . and the longer continuous alpha rhythm is maintained. • an empty-void — a state where perception (and non-perception) ceases because all complementary attributes cancel out . when one comes to truly know oneself. grammar and logic . resonating symphony of wave forms. the pull of the material body and ego personality become greatly decreased . The third will not 96 . according to mystics. via biofeedback . abraham Maslow comments on his patients who had mystical experiences: ‘This is not a simple a happening as one might imagine from the bare words . the easier it becomes to produce and to maintain an alpha rhythm.

in the light of what has been revealed by quantum physics. where the binary splitter in the brain is rendered ineffective) has been described by or alluded to by every major religion .’ Universes appear. In other words. When there is a break in the symmetry of awareness (for example. says that God is superior to all opposition between being and non-being. a negative situation is interchangeable with a positive situation. Using meditative terminology — one may experience ‘perception.THe Really aSTONISHING HyPOTHeSIS | Chapter 11 experience anything .’ another may experience a superposition of ‘perception’ and ‘non-perception’. and then a cancellation of these attributes occurs spontaneously . There are many intermediate states (which correlate to the various higher energy universes and the corresponding meditative states) where the superposed state can be intermittently ‘experienced . loosely defined] is Samsara [the multiverse] . are in superposition or disappear like a mirage relative to the degree of symmetry in our awareness . joy is interchangeable with suffering. the state is indefinable in terms of classical logic .e . may be to say that every thing and every person both exist and does not exist . the fifth century father of mysticism in both eastern and Western churches. the multiverse is distinguished from the void only by the degree of symmetry in our awareness — from an asymmetric serial state of awareness to a symmetric parallel state of awareness .e . and as ‘attribute-less’ by a third observer . in superposition) is observed as separate attributes by another observer. means that one thing is interchangeable with another . it therefore cannot be asserted either that God is or is not . The ‘Middle Path’ in Buddhism and ‘Centrering Meditation’ in Christian contemplation are attempts to restore our awareness to perfect symmetry and achieve a non-dual mode . (Schrödinger’s cat is both alive and dead . When there is perfect symmetry in awareness — being neither attracted to an attribute nor repelled by its contrary attribute (i . Pseudodionysus. attributes that are observed ‘simultaneously’ by one observer (i . Contrary attributes within a universe and contrafactual universes are initially superposed. This has led to the cryptic saying in Mahayanist Buddhism that ‘Nirvana [the void.) 97 . Perfect symmetry in awareness simply means that the individual is neither attracted nor repelled by opposites . The modern view. in the mathematical sense.’ Symmetry. when an attribute is interchangeable with its contrary attribute). Indeed.’ The latter state is not unconsciousness — it is the canceling-off of the contrary states ‘perception’ and ‘non-perception .’ This ‘non-dual state’ (where dualities or polarities are cancelled-out i . and the third experiences ‘the cessation of perception . when a desire arises — evidencing attractions and aversions) a universe manifests .e . self is interchangeable with not-self .

‘…if water and fire are present universally in the same space and at the same time. surrender to the void. Considering that all particles in this 98 . regardless of the distance between them . how is it that they do not destroy each other? …how can two different and opposing natures be mutually universal at the same time?’ Superpositions of complementary attributes are difficult for the mind to grasp .2 entanglement can be described as a superposition principle involving two or more particles which are generated in the same event but separated in spacetime . Beatles. ‘Tomorrow Never Knows’ Superposition of Complementary Competitive Attributes long before Schrödinger wondered whether his famous cat could be both alive and dead at the same time. entangled particles which are anti-correlated in relation to spin continue to exist within our spacetime . it is shining… Or play the game ‘existence’ to the end. Physicist amir aczel says that the idea of superposition — of ‘being at two places at once’ — is related to the phenomenon of entanglement . They do not cancel out .CH a PT er 12 Superposition in the full-Void lay down all thought. of the beginning . a commentator in the Surangama Sutra questioned. Two particles that can be light years away may behave in a concerted way: what happens to one of them happens to the other one instantaneously.

is very foreign (to us) since we never encounter it in our daily lives . The current was in a superposition of clockwise and anticlockwise flows. Superposed or Symmetric Logic amir aczel observes that in quantum mechanics we have to abandon the quotidian ‘either-or’ logic in favour of the new ‘both-and’ logic . he says.6 yet Matte Blanco says this is the symmetric logic used by the unconscious . has been confirmed in numerous experiments . it was never zero . This also means that the universe is in a superposition of contrary states right now! The Superposed State With our current understanding of quantum physics. Matte Blanco described the dream world as where ‘paradox reigns and opposites merge to sameness‘. in which a system can exist in two states (such as having two different values of angular momentum or being in two different places) at the same time. In this case a super current was made to flow in opposite directions at the same time . The quantum system in question was a supercurrent (containing billions of electron pairs) flowing around a 140-micron-sized superconducting quantum interference device (SQUId) circuit . in a sense then all particles are entangled with their anti-correlated particles . There is some support for equating unconscious states with quantum superposition . The concept. Quantum superposition. for example.4 In a Stony Brook experiment quantum states were superposed on a macroscopic scale .SUPerPOSITION IN THe fUll-VOId | Chapter 12 universe were generated from one event — the Big Bang and its aftermath. Neuroscientist 99 . most physicists have come to accept the superposed state which allows contradictory states to exist at the same time . a single ion can have a measure of existence simultaneously in two places (several nanometers apart) within an atom trap3. 5 This is also true of the universe which is a composite of attributes and its contrary attributes (yin and yang) — which is the same as saying that the universe is in a superposition of yin and yang — but it is never zero from our usual frame of reference . Petro Gopych. also an apt description of the quantum world . This device was a trillion trillion times larger than an atom – and yet exhibited quantum duality associated with waves . or wavelike manifestations of C-60 molecules can be split and sent along separate paths of an atom interferometer .

These strange ‘superpositions’ are extremely fragile . and of the world . We have to bear in mind. or exist simultaneously in two places .jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS Mystics who have been using language based on superposed or symmetric logic have had mixed responses — from amusement to accusations of being illogical . Weak Measurements Preserve Superpositions a quantum particle such as an electron can spin clockwise and anticlockwise at the same time. a ‘strong measurement’ attempts to be highly accurate in each observation — immediately collapsing the wavefunction to this or that actuality . though. an international team of scientists. While classical aristotelian logic adheres to the law of non-contradiction. it collapses back to some kind of normality . On the other hand. Make a measurement of. and of which they form a part . Israel. and so this mysterious quantum world of superposed states has remained impossible to explore. Effects of Measurement on Worldview The organisation of the brain obeys principles of uncertainty and complementarity. superposed logic transcends it . so it remains quantum coherent. that our sensory systems (which include the relevant regions in our brains) are measuring instruments that process information without the aid of the conscious self . Stephen Grossberg. for example. the same mysterious measurement process that leads to wavefunction collapse 100 . as does the physical world with which brains interact.7 a ‘weak measurement’ does not disturb a system significantly. Superposed logic is not illogical. an electron spinning both ways at once and the electron appears to have just one spin . it is alogical . led by yakir aharonov in Tel aviv University. used weak measurements to reveal interesting features of superposed states . Neuroscientist 8 einstein’s objection to the proposition that consciousness causes the wavefunction to collapse was that non-human machines were doing the measuring . until recently . the measurement has to be repeated many times in order to get as close to the real answer as possible . lifting off the lid from the container containing Schrödinger’s famous cat forces the cat to be either alive or dead . To make up for this. say. Hence. It had been a tenet of quantum theory that as soon as anyone tries to observe a superposition. This suggests that these principles reflect each brain’s role as a self-organising measuring device in the world. but each individual measurement is less accurate .

SUPerPOSITION IN THe fUll-VOId | Chapter 12

in laboratories would be operating in our everyday lives when our brains measure the environment . It is possible to generalize that: • ‘Strong measurements’ by the (discriminating, left) brain lead to wave function collapses and a manifest universe . The propositional and discriminating human left brain, with its attention to detail and a demand for a high level of accuracy in specific observations, makes strong measurements . This correlates to our ‘classical’ everyday world . • ‘ Weak measurements’ by the (appositional, right) brain preserve superpositions and is associated with the full-void state . The appositional human right brain, with global attention to aggregated information, makes weak measurements . This correlates to certain advanced meditative states . • ‘No measurements’ by the brain does not manifest anything and is associated with the empty-void state . This correlates to the non-manifestive ‘consciousness’ of a ‘liberated’ monk (as frequently described in Buddhist and Hindu religious literature) .

Event Horizons
event horizons, in a broader sense, mark the boundary between a state where events occur (in spacetime) and a state where events are irrelevant — between the universe and the empty-void . according to general relativity, gravitation severely modifies space and time near a black hole . as the event horizon is approached, time slows down relative to that of a distant observer, stopping completely on the horizon . This is also exactly what happens when the Planck limits are reached . Spacetime, dualities and cycles are suspended, held in abeyance or become frozen at the event horizon . It’s as if somebody pressed the ‘Pause’ button on the universal movie . John Taylor says that a space traveller will take a finite time to fall into the event horizon around a collapsed star (from his frame of reference) . But an observer, who keeps a good distance away, will only see the rocket and the rider going ever more slowly to the star, getting fainter and fainter as they do so . In fact they become redder (due to the gravitational redshift) and fainter; and then become invisible . It will take the spacecraft forever to reach the critical Schwarzschild radius . 9 according to ron Cowen, the observer never actually sees the person passing through the event horizon into oblivion . That’s because the gravity at the event horizon, which warps spacetime severely, causes clocks to tick ever more slowly, ultimately freezing time altogether .10 The voyager, however, rushes right through the horizon without any ill effects .11 On macroscopic scales, within a particular universe, black holes mark

jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS

event horizons . On microscopic scales, the ‘Planck limits’ mark the event horizons . When approaching the Planck limits a similar freezing occurs . Gerard ‘t Hooft prefers not to speculate that quantum mechanics breaks down at the Planck scale, but instead suspects that quantum mechanics becomes trivial there . In other words, quantum superpositions are still allowed but become irrelevant . 12 In 2000 Jack Ng of the University of North Carolina reported in Nature magazine that the foaminess of spacetime near the Planck limits leads to an uncertainty in timekeeping (the more accurate the clock, the shorter its lifetime) which in turn leads to a bound on information processing (speed and memory simultaneously) — analogous to the Heisenberg bound on simultaneous measurement of momentum and position . He believes that the faint gurgle of spacetime foam can be detected by just a hundredfold enhancement in certain projects . This suggests that the Planck limits (in our universe) might eventually become a realm that can be approached and measured .13 On even larger scales, event horizons are present ‘where’ the universe meets the void . The event horizon of a black hole encircles an invisible black hole sitting inside a manifest universe . On the other hand, the event horizon of the universe encircles the manifest universe which sits inside what appears to be a black hole (a void) . The most outrageous possibility is that we might be living inside an enormous black hole . r G daghigh, J I Kapusta, y Hosotani, Physicists 14

Superposed Dualities at the Event Horizon
a J deikman notes that one of the phenomena common to all subjects is what appears to be the ‘simultaneity of conflicting perceptions’ during advanced meditation states . Newberg and d’aquili say that during meditation or ritual states, logical paradoxes or the awareness of polar opposites may appear simultaneously, both as antinomies and as unified wholes . This experience is coupled with an intensely affective, oceanic or blissful experience . during intense meditative experiences, the experience of the union of opposites is expanded to the experience of the total union of self and other .15 dualities become superfluous at the superposed event horizon (the ‘full-void’) and cancels out in the empty-void . Where there is near-perfect symmetry, dualities are equivalent . Up or down, cold or hot means the

SUPerPOSITION IN THe fUll-VOId | Chapter 12

same to the observer . a break in symmetry signifies that one of the polarities in the duality takes precedence at a point in time . This is required for any universe to manifest . for example, Science acknowledges that for our universe to exist there must be a preponderance of matter . The universe (as we know it) would not exist if there was an equal distribution of matter and anti-matter . In the nearly perfectly symmetric event horizon (the full-void), polarities and dualities become meaningless and irrelevant as they are indistinguishable . In the perfectly symmetric empty-void they cancel out . ‘Consciousness without feature,’ without end, luminous all around: Here water, earth, fire and wind have no footing . Here long and short, coarse and fine, fair and foul; and name and form [i .e . dualities] are all brought to an end . With the cessation of consciousness, each is here brought to an end . Saying attributed to Siddhartha Gautama

It is interesting to note that there are two very different types of consciousness mentioned above – ‘consciousness without feature’ and just (plain) consciousness . The former alludes to right brain convergent awareness (which merges into a non-local universal mind) and the latter to left brain divergent awareness (as described in Chapter 1) . The former is a perfectly symmetric awareness, often called a ‘non-manifestive consciousness,’ which is neither attracted nor repelled by opposites and beyond dualities (i .e . ‘long and short’, ‘coarse and fine’, ‘fair and foul’ etc .) . Physicist John Taylor says, ‘ . . .the traveller into superspace has to leave all his usual notions of space and time behind him . He cannot ask if superspace is hot or cold, whether it is wide or narrow, or whether it is shaped like a cube or sphere . It has no past or future, nor any dimensions . It is a lace-work of worm-holes, forming and disappearing constantly in motion but never advancing or retreating . It is full of ceaseless activity, yet overall it is static and timeless .’17

Structure within the Full-Void
Heinz Pagels notes that the nothingness ‘before’ the creation of the universe is the most complete void that we can imagine — no space, time or matter existed . It is a world without place, without duration or eternity, without number…yet this unthinkable void converts itself into the plenum of existence — a necessary consequence of physical laws . Where are these laws written into the void? It would seem that even the void is subject to law, a logic that existed prior to time and space . Sten Odenwald remarks that in some

the event horizon). Physicist John Hitchcock believes that the 104 . even the things it contained. Identity and intentionality may therefore yet be present (in a ‘frozen’ state) on the ‘surface’ of the universe (i .e . the gravitational field would contain all the information Nature needed to fashion time and space . the ink slowly collapsed upon itself and once again formed a droplet . although it may become superfluous (and meaningless) . non-manifest) order that was revealed when it was reconstituted . The space between the cylinder and the jar was filled with glycerin . But it seems very difficult to understand how a point can process the information of its own field coming back from the environment . How can the full-void or superposed event horizon contain structural information and identities? david Bohm described an interesting device he saw in a BBC television program . 20 Bohm writes. such as the fundamental attributes. physicists postulate that there should be some structure between 10 -15 cm and 10 -33 cm which is the Planck length . form) of the universe appears to be inherent in the apparent emptiness of the full-void .e . The structure (i .’21 as noted in advaita Vedanta. When the handle on the cylinder was turned. only to reveal itself once again at the dawn of manifestation . He says this is where people think that space-time will break down. according to Buddhist Mahayanist Scriptures. The natural assumption is that it is point-like .19 Paradoxically.e . they find no structure . the universe dissolves into the void. all dualities are suspended or superposed in the full-void and cancelled-out in the emptyvoid . This information will be there even when the universe is dissolved but will be activated in the next cycle of manifestation . would be part of its invisible fabric . and underlying reality of which everything in this universe — including ourselves — is an expression . structural information and forms are implicit in the fullvoid .17 Physicist B J Hiley explained that in experiments which have been made to find the radius of the electron they assume that it has an internal structure . it is the basic. rather. ‘form is empty. But when the handle was turned back in the opposite direction. emptiness is form .jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS unfathomable way.’ 22 according to danah Zohar the quantum vacuum is very inappropriately named because it is not empty . fundamental. floating motionless in the glycerin was a drop of ink . However. The device was a specially designed jar containing a large rotating cylinder . Therefore. ‘This immediately struck me as very relevant since when the ink drop was spread out. the ink spread out through the syrupy glycerin and seemed to disappear . although he feels it may break down before that . it still had a ‘hidden’ (i . according to him you can have structure in an electron without being extended in spacetime .

Taimni says that when action comes out from an integrated (unbounded. 24 Physical reality is irreducibly random . This uncertainty is due to the fact that at the basis of the phenomenal world which is governed by exact natural laws is consciousness . In other words. a metaphysicist stated basically the same idea but with a different interpretation . Gerard Milburn however questions. this randomness is at the very heart of reality. Perfect Symmetry — Perfect Randomness — Perfect Freedom The void is symmetric .SUPerPOSITION IN THe fUll-VOId | Chapter 12 ‘world-field’ in the quantum vacuum contains the forms that generate the universe . This also means that it is totally random in character and acausal from our perspective . Taimni is appealing to a top-down and holistic process which gives rise to uncertainty and the probabilistic nature of the physical 105 . The term ‘nowhere’ is significant — the void (or the equivalent illusory black hole interiors ‘in’ the universe) is in fact literally ‘nowhere’ since space is an illusion . The whole of the manifested universe which is bound by natural laws.’ says Cahill .’23 according to lynne McTaggart. therefore. ‘far from being merely associated with quantum measurements. bit by bit. Uncertainty. nearly all the symmetry in nature are less symmetric than the cause that gave rise to them .26 Cahill and Klinger view forms as being randomly generated . symmetric) consciousness it comes out from the consciousness as a whole and not from any particular act of willing — as in the case of mind 27 — much like creative ideas that appear almost from nowhere . Nature seems to be dissatisfied with too much symmetry .’25 asymmetric universes are generated from the symmetric void through repeated breaks in its symmetry . ‘But how can anything so beautifully ordered and lawful as the universe arise from such an apparently lawless principle? The apparent intelligibility of the universe is constructed. according to him. Others are of the view that it only appears randomly generated because they are generated from an unbounded indeterminate consciousness . is embedded. from entangled ‘qubits . in consciousness which is free and therefore indeterminate . I K Taimni argues that ‘it is this indeterminateness at the basis of every natural phenomenon which is reflected in and referred to as the principle of uncertainty which has been discovered by physicists . as it were. and therefore determinate. John Hitchcock says. einstein himself recognised that matter itself was a disturbance of perfect randomness . is found at the bedrock of any phenomenon and not in the body of the phenomenon itself . To reginald Cahill and Christopher Klinger space and time and all the objects around us are no more than the froth on a deep sea of randomness .

Chirality is the ‘right-handedness’ or ‘left-handedness’ of the universe. according to lynne McTaggart.jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS world at the subatomic level where it approaches consciousness . disappears 106 . This randomness of the void also gives it total freedom . in a sense.’30 lynne McTaggart says that the quantum world was a perfect hermetic world of pure potential. that is. dennis Gabor described the film produced by a holographic system as ‘noise’ — a meaningless tangle of swirls . every exchange of every virtual particle radiates energy . inexhaustible energy source — equal to or greater than the energy density in an atomic nucleus — all sitting there unobtrusively in the background of the empty space around us. modern physics tells us that the universe is created in a highly symmetric state but these symmetries are hidden in our everyday world until we reach very high energies — the natural energies of our universe . symmetry will be restored as we journey up higher energy (parallel) universes . you come up with a vast. yet the hologram of an object appears instantaneously when a laser beam is shone onto this ‘noise . like one all pervasive. however. an observer’s brain which suppresses certain attributes of the void — enabling a universe to manifest . Infinite Energy The full-void is a source of infinite energy . When the perfect symmetry of the superposed-void is ‘disturbed.’ There is evidence that the whole universe is holographically encoded in the full-void which appears to be an irreducibly random void . it is the asymmetry associated with parity .28 according to david Peat. left-handed or right-handed universe — which counter-balance each other .’ it collapses and manifests as this or that. The multiverse.e . So everything must have its (suppressed) equal and opposite in some-form and some-where . this is compensated in some other mirror universe . The zero point energy in any one particular transaction in an electromagnetic field is half a photon’s worth . supercharged backdrop . The total energy of this ‘zero point field’ exceeds all energy in matter by 10 40 . Symmetry and Manifestation Global symmetry demands that where there is a local violation of symmetry in one universe. only made real — and. less perfect — when interrupted by an intruder 31 i . every asymmetric manifestation is reflected by its opposite by the perfectly symmetric void . Metaphysicist Taimni says that ‘everything in manifestation must disturb the harmony and distort (or perhaps suppress) the perfection of the Whole .29 Hence. But if you add up all the particles in and out of being. Individual universes are chiral . The energy in a single cubic metre of space is enough to boil all the oceans of the world .

There is no measuring of a man won to the goal . thanks to chirality. In Hebrew mysticism such a realm is called ain Soph. when perfect symmetry is reached the empty-void is realised . the eternal state of being which results when all qualities are removed — the unconditioned state of all things . It is. says david Peat. there are no measurables associated with the perfectly symmetric non-manifestive ‘consciousness’ of a ‘liberated’ person (as described in Buddhist and Hindu religious literature) . there is no manifestation of any universe (in other words. 34 107 . all ways of telling are removed . at this level. the superposed full-void is realised. If there is perfect mirror-symmetry. 32 a universe can only manifest to an observer if there is some asymmetry in the interactions between its particles and forces . that we have an observable (asymmetric) universe at all . there will be no ‘measurables’ relating to that universe) .SUPerPOSITION IN THe fUll-VOId | Chapter 12 at the global level . Similarly. the highest states are unmanifest. Saying attributed to Siddhartha Gautama 33 according to a T Mann. The perfectly symmetric void is frequently referred to as the ‘unmanifest’ in religious and metaphysical literature . when near-perfect symmetry is reached. When all conditions are removed. unknowable and exist beyond the universe .

where no one thing is apart from others . if we could observe an infinite universe we would not see anything at all. a gestalt) . where every positive particle is matched with an equal negative particle . would be an infinitely dense and infinitely extended three dimensional plane . that is. ‘I used to believe that an overlay of worlds. zero energy . and thus in truth. integrating many inputs simultaneously to eventually arrive at a complete configuration (i . yet remove one part and its opposite will appear in its absence .’ an overlay of worlds would produce a space without any observable matter. if we could somehow observe all the worlds together within the same space . return the part and the entire infinite field of space returns to zero mass. But now I understand that for every matter universe like our own. the totally infinite. Iaccino 1 Physicist Gevin Giorbran says. 108 .CH a P T er 13 Cancellation in the empty Void Cancellation of Complementary Competitive Attributes The right-holistic mode is particularly good at grasping patterns of relations between the component parts of a stimulus array.e . there exists an opposite anti-matter world to cancel the first. The many worlds combined into a single state could possibly create such a perfect medium. zero density.

it must iso109 . the Spirit must ‘dis-identify’ and disentangle itself from mental processes.e . Newberg and d’ aquili 2 according to Newberg and d’ aquili. everyday awareness.CaNCellaTION IN THe eMPTy-VOId | Chapter 13 What would you perceive if you could perceive the multiverse. and positive and negative spin. in order to free itself from suffering. so that the positives and negatives cancel as to net quantity of each attribute which is generated in the process . In normal. with its contrary attributes and universes. The Attributeless Void Since contrary attributes cancel out their conjugate partners in the void. it is difficult for the holistic operator to function in isolation . Deafferentation in Meditation yoga is the restraint of the processes of the mind . they say. The absolute functioning of the holistic operator.’ Physicist John Hitchcock explains that a particle and its antiparticle (generated in the quantum vacuum) have the same mass but their charge and spin arise in terms of opposites i . what logically follows is an attributeless void .’19 Total Functioning of the Holistic Operator Mystics of all religions achieve an immediate sense of God via the total application of the holistic operator to the totality of reality . in intense meditation and prayer this operator can be made to function briefly in an absolute sense ‘so that the entire universe is perceived as a unity .’ Newberg and d’ aquili describe this as the absolute unitary state . Patanjali. positive and negative charge. as a gestalt? Well. the empty-void can be said to be ‘attributeless . there is a holistic operator located in the parietal lobe in our non-dominant (usually right) brain . which he calls an ‘emptiness of attributes . yoga Sutras 3 Total deafferentation is the cutting-off of all input to a cognitive operator in the brain . according to Tola and dragonetti’s commentary on the (Patanjali’s) yoga Sutras. If a universe of contrary attributes is experienced holistically it will be both a perfect unity and a perfectly symmetric void . However. This is one form of emptiness. apparently. is associated not so much with the concept of God as with the experience of God .

jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS late itself from mind and its functions . who can experience emotional and mental states. this discontinuity is breached and a 110 . Sten Odenwald asks. it is the deep calm. ‘does not imagine he is aught or anywhere or anything . 9 This man. during the highest stage of concentration. a man enters and abides in the cessation of perception (the empty-void) .’ meditators know that it has effects that go beyond the ‘physical . the full-void). Understanding this might well lead us to conclude that the physics which gives us human consciousness is one of the basic potentialities within the quantum vacuum . the only entity that ultimately remains.’ she says . the illusion of spacetime evaporates . Once the total restraint is produced…absolute voidness reigns in the mind. reduced to motionlessness and to the silence of a quietude raised to its highest level . accessing the void can therefore have both physical and psychological effects that last a long time . We also have already argued that particle-waves (and fields) possess consciousness as a generic property.’ We know every emotion and idea has ‘physical’ correlates . without any inner or external object in which it can be reflected. spaceless and empty of content .4 This isolation can only be brought about by the restraint of mental processes . in the author’s book. that is. one of the fields within the quantum vacuum is thought to be a coherent Bose-einstein condensate. By elimination of these (mental) processes. according to danah Zohar. isolated and free…pure consciousness without limitations of space and time. by passing beyond the state of ‘neither perception nor non-perception’ (the event horizon of our awareness. ‘It might even give us some grounds to speculate that the vacuum itself is conscious. There is a discontinuity between the full-void and the empty-void . says Gautama. ‘Our Invisible Bodies .7 Hence.’8 according to Siddhartha Gautama. can relate to . Through spontaneous natural forces. one after the other.’ In other words. a condensate with the same physics as the ground state of human consciousness . free and isolated in its total and absolute purity . ‘Could there really exist some kind of elemental void? Could this place or condition be the complete negation of every physical attribute we can comprehend? It would be timeless. will be the Spirit. the profound silence…’ 5 The Physical-Mental Void While Science views the void as purely ‘physical. the void has psychological correlates which a being. when there is a total and absolute restraint the Spirit ‘dwells established in its own nature…pure.’6 and when we look at our physical bodies in the mirror. we know we have both physical and mental attributes .

CaNCellaTION IN THe eMPTy-VOId | Chapter 13 ‘region’ devoid of space or time or an ‘elemental void’ can be realised — according to Gautama’s findings about 2. and unsurpassed all entered and remained in this very same emptiness that is pure. will all enter and remain in this very same emptiness that is pure. then this nothingness is simply one and the same . There cannot be two or more ‘everythings . they all enter and remain in this very same emptiness that is pure. superior. and totally undifferentiated state .’ as well as of ‘nothing. superior. superior.500 years ago — and similar findings in other religions . and unsurpassed. and unsurpassed . for if the mystic reaches non-being.’10 rodney Bomford says that both the unconscious and the goal of the mystic are not private. superior. not possessed uniquely by the individual . that is to say. an unconscious at its deepest level shared by every animate being.’ The depth of the unconscious is single. The Public Void This void is not a ‘personal’ void . and unsurpassed . then to a multi-dimensional implicated order.10 Newberg and d’aquili maintain that ‘the actual experience of absolute unitary being is necessarily the same for any individual who experiences it . superior. he says . Contemplatives and priests who in the future will enter and remain in an emptiness that is pure. superior. Contemplatives and priests who at present enter and remain in an emptiness that is pure. in the present or in the future . but are one and the same in every individual . That which the mystic glimpses is not just his or her unconscious. and unsurpassed . then to an extension of 111 . according to (Siddhartha) Gautama. and unsurpassed. ‘Contemplatives and priests who in the past entered and remained in an emptiness that was pure. If on the other hand the mystic is experiencing the unity of everything — then again that is one and the same .’ This is necessary from a neurophysiological as well as a philosophical perspective . There is something universal in the kind of experience that people have of this deep level — an experience of ‘everything.11 Beyond the ’Gates of Planck’ What we have seen thus far is a progression from explicate order to simple three-dimensional implicate order. according to him . unified.’ he says . One person’s nothingness is presumably the same as another person’s . It is objective and can be accessed by anyone. nothingness. but the unconsciousness of God. It is necessarily experienced as an infinite. This experience is what Christian mystics describe as an experience of God.

Pat Price studies also suggest that the universe exists in some vast ‘here’ where here represents all points of space and time at a single instant . In the quantum world of the (zero point) field. he is freed . david Bohm 12 Science now hypothesises that beyond the Planck limit (the microscopic superposed event horizon) is a space-less and time-less void i . as a result scientists have no way of predicting what state the universe was in right after the Planck era . a subatomic world of pure potential.’ There is an absence of classical spacetime and classical objects (including the Sun. Below 10 -43 sec. the Sun is not visible. it becomes discontinuous . according to andrei linde. yet darkness is not found .e . Moon.e . Saying attributed to Siddhartha Gautama 14 The Pat Price studies and the Pear studies suggest that at a more fundamental level of existence.jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS this to the immense ‘sea’ in what is sensed as empty space . dualities are meaningless .13 The Empty Void There the stars do not shine. the Moon does not appear. bliss and pain. Below Planck scales. it ends . or people) . What is present below Planck scale is neither consciousness nor unconsciousness . lynne McTaggart. The next stage may well lead to the notion of the implicate order beyond the critical (Planck) limit of 10 33 cm . space ends .e . the universe cannot be said to be homogeneous or inhomogeneous because these concepts have no meaning in a place where there is no ‘up’ or ‘down. ‘where’ there is no distinction between ‘here and there’ or between ‘now and then . Information ends . space and time. Consciousness cancels out . where there are no dualities) . life exists as one enormous present . When a sage has known [this sphere]. Science reporter 15 according to lynne McTaggart. 112 . then from [duality:] form and formless. Below 10 -33 cm (Planck space). at 10 -43 sec (Planck time) time becomes quantized i .16 at macroscopic scales. no obvious cause and effect .’ no ‘before’ or ‘after’ (i . cause and effect also break down inside a black hole . there is no space or time.

If we can operate through other bodies and brains. The wavelength of a wave is simply the length of one complete wave cycle — from the crest of one wave to another . even hundreds of thousands of worlds .CaNCellaTION IN THe eMPTy-VOId | Chapter 13 at the centre of a black hole lies the singularity where spacetime has infinite curvature . In this bizarre realm in which space and time are broken apart. space and time cease to exist as we know them . Their sight reaches everywhere . Hence. 113 . according to renowned physicist. Currently.’17 In a sphere where time does not exist. he says . we need not be restricted to a 3d space . cause and effect cannot be unraveled . space and time ‘break-up’ and become discontinuous . all the worlds. ‘looking beyond this world. much less spacetime . The basic operations of the right brain generate an integrated representation of where we are in space . as the wavelength decreases. The same thing would happen if we went down to microscopic Planck scales in the physical universe . Here it is no longer meaningful to speak of space and time. when we imagine we are seeing into an infinite 3d space. a 3d space is constructed by our brains for us based on incoming information . In either case. the wavelength decreases . Jumbled up at the singularity. University of Illinois Is Perception Indefinitely Extended? The Surangama Sutra claims that ‘in the state of freedom from intoxicants’ a person ‘will be able to look upon the countries of this world and see them as clearly as an object lying in the palm of his hand . it would be natural to be at all places at the same time . But the perception of the eyes belonging to ordinary sentient beings cannot pierce through the thickness of a tenth of an inch . the frequency increases . the sub-quantum region is reached . then perception could indeed be non-localised and extend ‘indefinitely . In that state the enlightened ones.18 If spacetime is an illusion. lee Smolin. the cycles contract to a point . we are falling for a fallacy in which we substitute what we actually see for an intellectual construct (generated by the brain) .’ End of ‘Cycles’ We note that as we go up the energy ladder of (parallel) universes. The continuous appearance of (3d) space is an illusion. Hence. In the highest energy universe. have seen with like clearness.

then resting in a state of ‘luminous’ non-duality . contemplatives experience bliss and luminosity. or primordial awareness — the absolute state of phenomena out of which space and time. breaking down all reified divisions of ‘outer’ and ‘inner’ (the illusions of space). Stephen Hawking a false vacuum (the full-void) is the lowest possible energy state. as distinct aspects of consciousness . The bhavanga has been characterised as the ground state of the human mind. out of which emerges all mental activity of a single individual . a true vacuum. Full and Empty Voids according to alan Wallace. there is no differentiation among these experiences. The false vacuum has positive energy density . on the other hand. But in the true vacuum of primordial consciousness. Buddhist contemplative science.jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS False and True Vacuums. mind. indicating a perfect symmetry that transcends relative space. whether they have been discovered yet or not . devoid of conceptualisation. is of the same nature as the ground state of absolute space. emerge .’ the absolute vacuum can be realised only through the cultivation of ‘contemplative (or experiential) insight . But the true vacuum depends on all the laws of nature. or of subject and object. 20 a false vacuum state has more energy than the true vacuum. mind and matter. Physicists work with false vacuums on a day-to-day basis . It is described as ‘the relative ground of becoming. While the relative vacuum of the bhavanga can be realised through the cultivation of a state of mere ‘meditative quiescence. and matter . and manner of dissolution of all types of phenomena. everything in the universe. time. The false vacuum is determined by the limitations of technology . The false vacuum has energy and structure and is not perfectly symmetrical . so it is difficult for them to conceptualise the true vacuum. But scientists do not know all the laws of nature.21 a true vacuum is defined as whatever remains once we have removed from some well-defined space everything that the laws of nature permit us to take away . but it is not completely devoid of energy . Primordial consciousness.’ Secondly. like Western physical science. out of which each individual mind-stream emanates . let alone create one . Such 114 . out of which emerge all mental and physical phenomena in the universe . which is taken to have zero energy density . location. describes two types of vacuums . firstly a false vacuum — which is called ‘bhavanga’ in Buddhist literature . In the ‘false vacuum’ of the bhavanga.’ Such experiential insight is gained by first investigating the origins.

In the false vacuum. The true vacuum of consciousness is utterly free of all conceptual constructs. awareness is still structured by conceptual and biological influences . and nothing that scientists could do to it would make any difference to it. the bhavanga. appears to be empty but has structure and energy . or true. fields. luminosity. just as the various attributes of the false vacuum of physics — particles. these entities are distinct from each other . devoid of all internal structure . and so forth are distinct from one another . and electricity are undifferentiated . the unity of absolute space and primordial consciousness is the absolute. it is imperceptible to our measuring instruments.CaNCellaTION IN THe eMPTy-VOId | Chapter 13 a region of space is as empty of material bodies and of energy as Nature allows . the more potent the consciousness becomes . vacuum. 22 While the bhavanga has an internal structure and is bound by time and causality. the false vacuum of consciousness. the image is released . featureless empty space. The true vacuum (empty-void) is perfectly symmetrical . If you could observe bare consciousness. 23 Contemplative Technique to Realise a Mental Vacuum Contemplatives follow a variety of procedures to create a mental vacuum . When the mind is so concentrated that all physical senses have gone dormant and awareness is luminous and pure. Thoughts obscure the luminosity of consciousness . it is perfectly symmetrical. timeless. The true vacuum of consciousness is one of perfect symmetry. Having no internal structure. even notions of existence and nonexistence . The realisation of the true vacuum of consciousness is by way of achieving the false vacuum of consciousness . The true vacuum is described as empty of matter and energy in contrast to the false vacuum as empty of matter but not energy . without mental states. The bhavanga is not a true vacuum because precognitive conceptual structuring of awareness still persists . says Wallace . fields. homogenous. timeless. particles. and devoid of internal differentiation . 115 . even though concepts such as subject and object are not manifest. In the true vacuum. One common strategy is to powerfully contract consciousness by focusing on a small mental image. In this state. including space and time. Since it is changeless. in which nothing changes. bliss. and non-conceptuality are experienced distinctly. mind and matter. it would appear empty and luminous . like its analogue in physics. and everything would be the same . for it is non-local. the smaller the object on which consciousness is focused.

subjective experience as the world of experience is devoid of real. Physicist K C Cole says that the void is the blank template on which the universe is written . objective space . Without a void in us. we would not be 116 . each one is out of touch with the other. atemporal. Hence.26 (We have already argued earlier. says Wallace . ‘There is no picture of the object being transferred from the object to the retina and from the retina to the brain . is that the absolute vacuum as conceived by physicists is devoid of consciousness.jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS When scientists observe physical space and its material contents. One striking difference. when physicists construct mathematical laws and theories to describe nature. not some objective space existing independently of consciousness . if either. a completely clean piece of paper is necessary to write on . while the absolute vacuum conceived by Buddhists is of the same nature as non-local.24 Physicists have imagined a universe devoid of consciousness. modify what was written or be constrained by what was written . To be totally original and not constrained. Without this blank template. an attributeless multidimensional void is therefore necessary for original universes to appear . but the only universe of which they have any knowledge is one generated with consciousness . however. nothing original can be generated .’ likewise.’ ) Creativity and the Void Imagine for a moment if you wanted to write on a piece of paper — which already had writing on it . as neurologist antonio damasio points out. that the vacuum or void does indeed have both physical and psychological attributes — although they may be superposed or cancelled-out in a perfectly symmetric ‘consciousness . the void itself is the source of our free will . however. primordial consciousness . The external space envisioned by physicists is as devoid of real. however. the perceptual images that they experience arise in the space of consciousness. you either would have to erase what was written. those concepts arise in the space of consciousness and nowhere else . according to Wallace. 27 The will is not free unless it exists in a void where all possibilities are equally available . which raises the question: which one. is real? allan Wallace 25 Physicists’ descriptions of the relative and absolute vacuum states of external space bear striking resemblances to the relative and absolute vacuum states of consciousness described by Buddhist contemplatives.

Heavens and hells are both movements away from the void . it can move in a variety of directions . ‘when you are in the centre. Stanislav Grof 29 Karma is a force that brings points of consciousness back to equilibrium. has considerable freedom. and the same principle likely applies to all aspects of nature and life . The move towards an undivided whole is likely a universal principle guiding our lives .’ The key to centrering and achieving perfect symmetry and equilibrium in awareness is to be neither attracted nor repelled by events or attributes . Creativity is an expression of the void . Of course. by contrast. It never delivers a new truth . beyond the normal unpredictable surprises of the near future. back to perfect symmetry . you have the freedom to move anywhere . as for the cosmos in which we live. asymmetric logic has a deterministic feel . each universe would follow the same route over a much longer time scale than an individual’s trajectory . there is every reason to believe that change moves toward a balance. 117 . every particle of consciousness of every being (even ‘incorrigibles. apparently in a far distant future our own spacetime and our parallel anti-matter cosmos which we are inseparably connected to will both merge .’ according to Buddhist scriptures) will be carried by the universal tide into the void . Ultimately.CaNCellaTION IN THe eMPTy-VOId | Chapter 13 free . a multitude of parallel worlds all unite within one place to return to the medium from which they originated . Stanislav Grof Karma — the Force of Symmetry — A Force from the Void? regardless of the world’s endless complexity. each time symmetry breaks there is a force that builds up — pushing consciousness back to the perfectly symmetric void . Symmetric logic [of the void]. rodney Bomford The Symmetry of God 28 a Christian writer once wrote. This disentangles the mind — allowing it to go into a superposition and then slip into an elemental void through natural forces .

Hence. it is the Spirit of God that actively sustains every form and force in the universe. ananda… as formerly. the enlightened ones. what result is left to be experienced due to earlier residual karma .’ he explains . sensory data fall on the enlightened monk only to roll-off like drops of water on a lotus leaf . Bhikkhu Nanananda 33 according to Nanananda. The transmutation brought about through detachment is so ineffably sublime that it enables the sage to live in the world while not being of it . I abide much in the void . This dual state has been described as incomprehensible and difficult to imagine . after enlightenment. de S Wettimuny says that the enlightened monk as an individual can experience. aldous Huxley 30 Abiding in the Void while in the World I abide much in the void. Heaven entails hell. the reality of the left brain still persists and is superimposed over the reality that the right brain has realised through enlightenment . 34 When the monk’s (physical) life is over. even the blissful visionary experiences tend to change sign if it persists too long . and ‘going to heaven’ is no more liberation than is the descent into horror . 118 . Hence. in terms of bodily comfort and discomfort. 32 The left and right brains mediate this two-fold existence — the left-dominant brain presenting to us Samsara and the right brain (devoid of all influence from the left brain) enabling us to realise Nirvana .jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS Mystical experience is beyond the realm of opposites . experience two different realities mediated by the two brains at the same time . so now too. Saying attributed to Siddhartha Gautama 31 according to Paramahansa yogananda. Visionary experience is still within that realm . …you should train thus: We will enter upon and abide in the void that is pure and unsurpassed by any other . which is mediated by the right brain. such as the ‘arhats’ in Buddhist literature. yet He is transcendent and aloof in the blissful uncreated void beyond the worlds of vibratory phenomena . ‘Those who attain “self-realisation” on earth live in a similar twofold existence. this karmic residue is exhausted .

perhaps. the spark evolves into a flame . which is why it cannot be adequately described in terms of this reality . If this is successful. this void expands so that finally there is nothing but the void . no smell.’ 37 We are the Universe Interacting with Our Self Never do we imagine that the infinite must be all around us.’ Without thinking or willing it slips naturally into an ineffable empty-void . in time.] Stanislav Grof 38 119 . The void had no form or substance or presence and was everywhere yet nowhere . different beings make different choices — exposing them to different consequences . No man is an island. no sight. He says. [emphasis added . leadbeater argues that it is somewhat misleading to speak of individual souls merging into the Great Soul . but rather part of a seamless whole . there will be no other universes (heavens or hells) to inhabit — freed from both Samsara (asymmetric reality or the spacetime continuum) and karma .’ he says. 36 I had a sense it was pure awareness. He or she then becomes more and more conscious of his unity with the divine . and as such is everything comprising the universe (including humans). it confronts the final superposed event horizon and experiences the ‘full-void . every monad is fundamentally a spark of the divine . efforts are made to ‘exhaust’ all emotional and mental content from the higher energy bodies . no taste. just is . as he or she evolves. as we ascend. devoid of experience and as such. 35 The divine is really. no feel and no emotion about it. as well as the unmanifest infinite . The Experience of the Void Paterson’s Experience alex Paterson described his ‘experience’ of the void . yet paradoxically was so big as to be infinite. that we are entangled within its ebb and flow . the void is simply beyond the limitations of time and space associated with the physical universe. when the physical bodies die. Thus there was no sound.’ This experience provided me with an insight into the esoteric concept that God just ‘is. ‘It has no actual form and as such was empty. yet somehow I was fully aware of it . ‘Being the unmanifest infinite. it was huge .CaNCellaTION IN THe eMPTy-VOId | Chapter 13 after the locus of awareness moves up all the higher energy bodies in parallel universes. We are all only the universe interacting with itself. It could not be defined in any terms of this reality. the residual void in all of us . even to the extent that it had no actual presence even though I was intimately aware of it (a paradox) .

cycles freeze . ‘When we encounter the void. . into the perfectly symmetric void. there is no manifestation of any universe (contrary attributes cancel out) .’ However for most of them the term God does not adequately capture the depth of their experience. In this paradoxical way we can transcend the usual dichotomy (the division into two. because it is obvious to them that those who know do not speak and those who speak do not know . Physicists 40 120 . from the point of view of a freely falling observer accompanying the in-falling particle the horizon is crossed after a finite time . Manifestations occur only when symmetry is broken . In fact nothing special happens to the in-falling matter at the horizon . trivialized and discredited by mainstream religions and culture . from the viewpoint of an observer outside the black hole. the binary split) between emptiness and form. however at the same time we have a paradoxical sense of its essential fullness .jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS Stanislav Grof says. or existence and non-existence . the manifested universe disappears like a mirage . In metaphysics we would observe that when the mind particle (the residual ‘causal’ body) disappears. we feel that it is primordial emptiness of cosmic proportions and relevance . it has to be experienced to be understood . the possibility of such a resolution cannot be adequately conveyed in words. but never crosses it . Some people consider silence to be the most appropriate reaction to the experience of the absolute. ‘even the names like absolute Consciousness and Universal Mind seem to be hopelessly inadequate to convey the immensity and shattering impact of such an encounter . daniella Bigatti and leonard Susskind. While it does not contain anything in a concrete manifest form. dualities are suspended. . In a perfectly symmetric ‘consciousness’ there is no manifestation of any objects or universes . However. relative to external observers. This cosmic vacuum is also a plenum since nothing seems to be missing in it . according to metaphysical evidence. the body of the individual will continue to manifest to them even after the meditator passes the event horizon and into the empty-void . relative to this perfectly symmetric consciousness only the void is . it seems to comprise all of existence in a potential form .’ Grof says that people who have had the experience know they have encountered ‘God . On the other hand. We become pure consciousness aware of this absolute nothingness. Passing the event horizon. since it has been distorted. the particle asymptomatically approaches the [event] horizon.’39 Non-Manifestive Consciousness at the superposed event horizon.

all it needs is a ‘nudge’ to fall into the full-void (analogous to the event horizon of a black hole). 121 .CaNCellaTION IN THe eMPTy-VOId | Chapter 13 The trajectory of the mind has been characterised as an asymptomatic spiral on its approach to Nirvana in Buddhist scriptures and commentaries . Sometimes. and then into the empty-void (analogous to the ‘interior’ of a black hole) .

an oceanic feeling and the loss of the distinction between self and the other . The aim of all these activities is to deactivate the verbal-conceptual association areas in the brain .C H a P T e r 14 Meditation & the Brain according to Karl Pribram. Presumably they cause similar changes in the neuronal activity of the brain as does meditative methods — although they may have negative side effects absent from traditional meditation . including viewing diagrams (or yantras).1 While brain machines and drugs may be used in sophisticated ways more often in the future to shift reality modes. confronting puzzles over phrases that have no rational meaning (or koans). lessening the hold of the left brain’s verbal mode .e . drugs have also been used to generate spiritual experiences in a religious setting . there is a disruption in self-awareness. a lesion in the temporal lobe near the amygdala can produce something akin to mysticism. low frequency 122 .’ another popular meditation method used consists of silently repeating or chanting a phrase (a ‘mantra’) over and over again. eastern mystical traditions have resorted to various techniques. Right Brain Good at Detecting Low Frequencies The non-dominant right brain is much quicker and much more accurate at detecting very large waves of visual information (i . or of concentrating on one object and turning-off the normal internal talk. and mental and physical exercises which aim to produce a state of ‘no conceptualising while remaining fully awake . a kind of consciousness-without-content.

MedITaTION & THe Br aIN | Chapter 14 information).’ The study involved a small number of people. The researchers speculate that other forms of yoga and meditation are likely to have a similar impact on brain structure. Most of the brain regions identified to be changed through meditation were found in the right hemisphere . Their own descriptions show a concern with a lessening of the verbal and conceptual approach to the world (associated with the dominant left brain) and do seem to encourage factors that involve the right hemisphere. he says . auditory and visual perception. But the researchers say the results are significant . 3 ‘What is most fascinating to me is the suggestion that meditation practice can change anyone’s gray matter. This means that emphasis was placed in perceiving events in 123 . ‘The study participants were people with jobs and families . The low frequency information is like a fuzzy but general outline. just 20 . assistant in psychology at Massachusetts General Hospital . They seek a deeper framework for the meaning of life.e . according to Ornstein . such as the overall view of the body in space . an assistant professor of psychology at yale . eastern mystical traditions have encouraged listening to low (frequency) tones in chants and bells in temples — thus eliciting and encouraging responses from the right brain. all had extensive training in Buddhist Insight meditation .4 Holistic Perception The spiritual traditions are mental-training systems . it could easily be that the two hemispheres process information through different kinds of filters and that in some way the left hemisphere has been tuned like a musical instrument to higher spatial and temporal frequencies and the right to slower ones . the high frequencies convey the details . according to Ornstein. Brain imaging of regular workers who meditate regularly revealed increased thickness in cortical regions related to sensory. as well as internal perception (for example. The large waves form the fundamental background images of our worldview. and the meaning of one’s life .’ said study team member Jeremy Gray. you don’t have to be a monk . 2 Meditation Changes Your Brain Key parts of the brain actually get thicker during meditation . whereas the left is much better at detecting the very short waves (i . high frequency information) . but each tradition probably has a slightly different pattern of cortical thickening based on the specific mental exercises involved . The study also indicates that regular meditation may slow agerelated thinning of the frontal cortex . the automatic monitoring of heart rate or breathing) . They just meditated on average 40 minutes each day. The research was led by Sara lazar.

repetitious stimulation .’ In other words. the right brain is convergent . according to Ornstein9 and ashbrook10. an almost hypnotic (sometimes mystical) state is achieved. a blue vase) . Hence.’ says Iaccino . yogis can respond to a series of repetitive stimuli at the same reaction level when not meditating . eastern religions and cultures emphasise right-modal thinking . She tried to explain the distinction between these two types of vision by giving an example . ‘he may recall the sight of the whole collection . 5 as noted earlier (see Chapter 1).g . the intellectual vision was seeing things as a whole rather than by parts — a process normally associated with the right brain .’ (Saint) Theresa of avila described two types of visions she received — one she called ‘imaginary visions’ which involved imagery and the second which she called ‘intellectual visions’ which were abstract . The left brain sees the universe projected out from its self whereas the right brain sees the universe converging on its self .6 according to neuroscientist. meditators focus lightly on a point to coerce the brain to go into a ‘convergent right brain mode . With continual concentration on every feature of the stimulus. seems to be a function of left-mode of thinking . restful right-brain alpha rhythms can be produced while inside the yogic meditative state . One technique that has proved useful in changing left brain dominance involves focusing attention onto a single object (e .8 This habituation.jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS aggregate .7 Dehabituation and Deautomization Our ordinary brains ‘tune out’ in response to continual. right-moders usually overestimate good feelings and drastically underestimate experienced negative circumstances .14 Iaccino says that the holistic style attempts to present a more optimistic view of life (sometimes to the point of being irrational) for the express purpose of motivating individuals to live each 124 .’ she says. However. This is replaced by ‘unity and oneness .’12 ‘after the subject re-enters the left reality. James Iaccino. in which a blanking out of the left brain’s reality occurs .13 Bliss according to Iaccino. She asks us to imagine that we are in a room in which are placed many objects . The right style is claimed to polish perceptions to such a point that happy feelings will dominate over sad ones . He says that past research has shown that calm. ‘Though a person may not remember each object afterwards. whereas the left brain’s attention is divergent.11 Iaccino says that ‘this dehabituation and deautomization process’ can be learned . he or she will carry back some of those right-modal experiences and perceive everyday objects in an entirely new fashion.

Being intelligent (being the brain hemisphere you most frequently use in everyday life). This is the ‘name’ of the image . This is the ‘form’ of the image . and of the oneness of all . finally an articulatory pattern is constructed so that the word that the image represents can be spoken . The ego’s aggressive resistance against the transpersonal mind (accessible via the right brain) is not an exaggeration . etc . though similar to emotional states. unplumbed by the discursive conscious intellect . They are ‘states of insight into the depths of truths or the gist of existence. 125 . each convergence zone handles a category of objects (faces. are also states of knowledge . threatened by the revelation.15 Battle between the Brains Harman and rheingold summarizing the perennial wisdom.) . it is channeled through ‘convergence zones’ in the brain until it is identified .16 This ego (which is associated with the dominant left brain) has been characterised as Satan or the devil in conventional religious literature . trees. The ego sees the other mind/brain in its midst as an enemy .MedITaTION & THe Br aIN | Chapter 14 day completely and to the fullest . at higher states of consciousness there is awareness of participation in a transpersonal mind (or the ‘universal mind’). The transient ego.’ Meditation allows you to communicate with the intelligent unconscious . animals. Deconstructing the Brain’s Reality according to neuroscientist antonio damasio. it devises incredible traps and threats to recover its former glory in a dominant left brain . religious literature abound with stories of how the devil or the ego tries to thwart the upward climb of an aspirant to a more expansive and holistic awareness . when an image enters the brain via the visual cortex. States of Knowledge William James believes that mystical states. a convergence zone does not store permanent memories of words and concepts but helps reconstructing them . throws up smokescreens to block awareness of this supraconscious . an acoustical pattern corresponding to the image is constructed by another area of the brain . say that the most essential part of the self is the ‘supraconscious’ not ordinarily accessible to conscious awareness . The battle between the two minds/brains in our body can be quite real — as was illustrated in one of roger Sperry’s cases of split-brain patients where one of the patient’s hand was holding a knife to kill himself but his other hand was trying to prevent it . Once the image has been identified.

It is at this point in the process of meditation. numbers. In terms of information-processing theory. Buddhist meditation serves to deconstruct mental processes which we have developed during our lifetime . nouns. one observes the stream of consciousness as having an observable beginning. which yields self and object representations only as the end products of a very long and complex reworking of stimulus information . facial expressions. letters. By reversing the process of constructing experience (which is basically what our brains do). plants. andrew Newberg and eugene d’ aquili 20 126 . awareness is reduced to a subtle flow of mental and physical events .’ There is no ‘I’ or object. according to Sensei. the meditator learns to disengage from external reality and the impact of sensations so as to bring awareness carefully to bear on the stream of consciousness . what the meditator is experiencing is the nature of perception prior to pattern recognition .18 ‘Hot’ and ‘Cool’ Meditation While certain types of meditation appear to have a greater effect on the arousal system… others [have] a greater effect on the quiescent system . all that is actually apparent from moment to moment is a mental or physical event and an awareness of that event .jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS There are about twenty known categories that the brain uses to organise knowledge. begins to disappear . including fruits/vegetables.17 When attention is sufficiently refined through training. No longer is there a sense of observing experiences. faces. meditation brings us into contact with the true nature of reality as it already and always exists . only present experience . proper names. We simply observe but make no attempt to categorize experiences that arise in the stream of consciousness . as the breathing and mental activity (and the equivalent neuronal activity in the brain) become more regular and reduced. past or future. is to reverse the key stages in the brain’s representational process. just individual moments of experience . animals. in which the sense of our being an observer separate from the process of experience. colors. at this level of awareness. What the meditator has actually done. body parts. It is at this point that categorizations processes cease . according to Sensei. a duration and an observable end . verbs. we develop the understanding of how the self is constructed in each moment as a relationship with an object of experience . This is the original ‘bare experience . eventually. with much practice. emotions and sounds .

21 although. It is better for all of us that these bizarre worlds in which “we” also exist are denied us . the more they are able to block input into the orientation association area . ‘Meeting my identical twin in all things but his ability to fly or walk on the ceiling could give me quite a shock . The more subjects are able to focus during their meditation. Insanity Physicist John Taylor says that it is a good thing. In passive (‘cool’) meditation (or ‘via negativa’ approach) one simply tries to clear the mind of all thoughts and avoid direct sensory input . during meditation there is a strong inverse correlation between increasing activity in the frontal lobe (the area associated with focusing attention) and the orientation association area .’ 23 There are usually elaborate preparations for participants in advanced meditation . oscillate between the two types of meditation in a single sitting — although one of the two types of meditation will usually dominate over the other . a number of meditative techniques. so ‘in america both of these types of cases are put in the same asylum . insane . who expects nothing but classical physical behavior. rajneesh says that we have not yet been able to differentiate religious madness from non-religious madness. This blocks-off the verbal-conceptual association area as well as direct inputs from the senses — resulting in a cuttingoff (or deafferentation) of the right orientation association area . for our own peace of mind. a confrontation with superspace would not only be bewildering. by yoga masters and the like . attention is not focused . it can drive a person. 127 . It is possible that schizophrenics and other ‘mentally unsound’ patients may have had encounters with beings from interpenetrating universes so different from ours that it causes a shock to their belief systems .’22 The danger of contracting insanity during advanced meditation has been pointed out in the relevant scriptures. what we call ‘ghosts’) have been startled by human attention . it is popular to classify meditative techniques as categorically passive or active. the attention is focused on some (physical or mental) object . that we cannot explore other worlds directly . according to Newberg and d’ aquili. It has also been observed that beings from parallel universes (in this case.MedITaTION & THe Br aIN | Chapter 14 Newberg and d’aquili classify meditation into two types — active and passive meditation . In active (‘hot’) meditation (via ‘positiva’ approach). including Buddhist insight meditation.

Unlike normal waking awareness which intensely measures the environment.’ Other subjects reported. describes the dark void as follows.’ another subject. no visible light. Nothing there. no ground. past.’ The subjects of another past-life therapist. pressing needs or obligations or goals . a ‘mysterious void between incarnations’ in which identity. ‘Near the singularity of a black hole quantum effects will become important and the plenitude of worlds in superspace should begin to be experienced . In this void.’26 128 . spaceless glide’ through pure nothingness.’ They describe the afterlife as a ‘timeless. ‘I felt no fear and no loneliness. Physicist 24 John Taylor warns us that we must be prepared for the instantaneous jump from one point of space to another if we want to understand how to penetrate and escape from superspace .’ Weak Measurements in Meditation In most meditative techniques. the subject often experiences no sense of self at all . memory. To relax the gaze and shift into a state of mind which is in equilibrium — neither attracted nor repulsed by any sensations . There doesn’t seem to be anything else except consciousness or awareness . no ceiling. Switching Mental Gears in Past-Life Regressions according to Peter Novak. Time and space were no more than a memory . In the dark void. I find myself in a great aloneness . the subject does not seem to sense the separate presence of anything else. relationships. no sky’ and ‘I’m not aware of being anywhere’ and ‘it’s black . This disentangles the mind from the environment — allowing it to slip into parallel universes or the void . an empty dark void is experienced in near-death experiences and past-life hypnotic regressions .25 In their book ‘life between life’ Joel Whitton (a neuropsychiatrist at the University of Toronto) and Joe fisher quote their subjects as saying. ‘It’s blank…dark…nothing . issues. One of their subjects reported. although I seemed to be alone . future. roger Woolger. and emotions are diminished . No ‘other’ of any kind . ‘I’m walking in endless nothingness — no floor. the meditative mind observes but does not carry-out any strong measurements of the environment . forms. John Taylor.jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS Superspace is the plethora of possible developments of the space in which we live . ‘in the inter-life there’s no part of me I can see . body. emotion. ‘all cares and fears were left behind . not even a sense of time . Some of them will send a normal human mad if they were experienced . the individual is taught to observe without any expectations .

The only reason we hear of one of these stages being reported more frequently than the other may have more to do with the hypnotic commands of the therapist than with the actual experiences of the subjects . There is a disagreement among regression researchers about what occurs in the inter-life .MedITaTION & THe Br aIN | Chapter 14 Visits to heavenly realms of light are often described sequentially . the subject does and is able to recall an existence in a particular higher energy universe . 28 Left and Right Brain Realities This switching from a bright temporal state to a dark timeless state during past-life hypnotic regressions opens up the exciting possibility that hypnosis. when Newton commands the subject to ‘shift mental gears. However. Novak is of the view that the dark and light states are occurring simultaneously and independently of each other . for example. besides traditional meditative or contemplative methods. when dr Michael Newton’s subjects are regressed to a point in time in between lives. It is possible that the bright temporal state is associated with left brain reality while the dark timeless state with right brain reality . who has performed hundreds of between-life regressions says that there is an ‘utter lack of temporal sequence’ in the realm in between lives . Light and Dark States Novak says that there is some evidence that both dark (the empty void) and light (the manifestation of a particular universe) states are experienced by all past-life subjects . with increased attention in one area and 129 . the hypnotist usually uses a certain command to coerce or instruct ‘to move into the light’ or something similar . It is. in fact.’ to transfer awareness to a different mind.27 In those reports where light is reported by the subject. Whitton. Hypnosis eeG studies show that the hypnotic state is not a form of sleep . These subjects never catch so much as a glimpse of the ‘light stage’ during their inter-life — no heavenly realm of light or hellish realm of bewildered spirits . a form of focused alertness. his subjects usually report finding themselves alone in the familiar dark void . can be used to ‘realise a timeless and spaceless void’ in a shorter time . However. Others find that the majority of their subjects describe afterlife experiences inside the realm of light . Woolger writes that more than 95 per cent of his subjects’ reports of the inter-life described this same peaceful void . Some find that the majority of their subjects only describe floating alone in an empty void .

during this time the mind is very open to visualisations and can create a rich sensory experience . There are significant changes in brain wave activity during these states . one which most people go in and out of every day . This observer self has been documented as a credible aspect of our mind that keeps us safe. However. driving down a long monotonous road. Hypnosis is a normal state of mind. during a hypnotic trance the conscious mind (frequently associated with the dominant left brain) is suppressed and the subconscious mind (frequently associated with the right brain) is revealed . When you are in a guided hypnotic trance session. for most people they simply feel relaxed . you may not feel like you are in a trance or in hypnosis . all of us pass through brief periods of hypnosis every day: once when falling asleep (i . listening to music that captures a mood or engrosses you.jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS decreased or absent focus on other areas — much like the active (hot) meditative state of ‘one-pointedness . We experience the hypnotic state every day without being aware of it . This observer self has also been mentioned in the Surangama Sutra (see Chapter 2) and can be 130 . we are able to get in touch with our subconscious mind (presumably mainly harboured in the right brain) . even when asleep . The brain’s waking state registers beta waves . People who lose themselves in a movie. In fact. pleasant state . there is an inverse correlation between the attention association area in the brain and the orientation association area during active (hot) meditation . It is not an unusual state of mind . When you are watching a movie that you are engrossed in. during hypnosis. you are in hypnosis . or a day-dream are probably experiencing a mild form of self-hypnosis . or driving down the road in trance. different to sleeping .’ as noted earlier. When the activity in the attention association area increases. there is a sharp reduction in activity in the orientation association area — which provides our orientation to this universe . you have an observer self. which is an actual part of you that is always aware and watching out for you . These states have already been noted to open up access to the intelligent intuitive unconscious (see Chapter 3) . allowing the non-analytical. when we are in hypnosis. this side of the brain is distracted. according to various researchers. The left side of the brain is considered to be analytical and conscious . The alpha state is a very dreamy. just as you are going to sleep it changes to alpha and then to delta and theta in deep sleep . a book. Others have commented that hypnosis is the induction of a trance-like state during which the patient is in an enhanced state of awareness. non-critical subconscious right-side of the brain to become more alert .e . the hypnogogic state) and once again when waking up (the hypnopompic state) . according to Newberg and d’ aquili.

MedITaTION & THe Br aIN | Chapter 14 associated with the right brain . 131 . hypnosis can be considered a form of guided meditation . When done by an experienced therapist. Self-hypnosis can generate the same cognitive processes as meditative methods . It is no wonder that most persons undergoing past-life hypnotic regression also go through meditative states reported in the metaphysical and religious literature .

our experience of whatever we mean by ‘soul’ must pass through the brain . Without it. they are referred to as ‘magma’ (short for ‘magnetic plasma’) bodies How does the brain in the physical biomolecular body interact with these higher energy bodies? The Surangama Sutra states that ‘In heavenly realms there may be seen similarities to light and darkness. the discriminating consciousness (associated with our dominant left brain) is also present in higher energy bodies and their universes . The ‘silver cord. andrew Newberg and eugene d’ aquili 1 In the metaphysical literature higher energy bodies are mentioned and described . and all other phenomena of this world.2 Hence.CH a P T er 15 Meta-Neurology …even if there is a soul. you would still have to continue making distinctions between yourself and objects . but that is because of the lingering memory of objects seen in this world .’ that is frequently mentioned in books on ‘astral trav132 .’3 In other words. Under those heavenly conditions. The model in the author’s book ‘Our Invisible Bodies’ sees these bodies as liquid-crystal bodies composed of a magnetic plasma of super particles . no universe or body would manifest to primordial awareness . The question is how we can show that the brain is what mediates all of our experiences .

the silver cord connects one body-brain to another . although. Lorber’s Work roger lewin’s article is ‘Is your Brain really Necessary?’ 5 outlined the remarkable research conducted at the University of Sheffield by neurology professor. in his article ‘With Brain destroyed. The cognitive-sensory systems of higher energy bodies allow us to experience parallel universes with different spacetime signatures . If this cord is severed or dissolved the activities of the brains in higher energy bodies will not be reflected in the physical-biomolecular brain or mediated by it . When Sheffield’s campus doctor was treating one of the mathematics students for a minor ailment. a pathological process had gradually destroyed and diminished the brain’s mass but the mystery of his return to normalcy remained unexplained . While the corpus callosum connects the right and left brains. however. had a reported IQ of 126 and was expected to graduate . They live and Think’4 has given many examples of persons. The Brain’s Invisible Superstructure The Visible Brain Vincent Gaddis. continued to live and think normally . the student had less than 1 millimetre of cerebral tissue covering the top of his spinal column . the walls of the cerebrum are 4 to 5 millimetres thick . this encephalic mass was completely detached from the bulb — which is a condition equivalent to literal decapitation . In other words. Prof G W Surya reported of a case of a man who had been insane for many years then suddenly became normal just before his death . the late dr John lorber . The student in question was academically bright. he noticed that the student’s head was a little larger than normal and referred the student to professor lorber for further examination . When he was examined by CaT-scan. due to an active abscess. activities occurring in the higher energy body-brains are also communicating with the brain in our biomolecular bodies . dr Gustave Geley reports a case of a young boy who died in full possession of his mental faculties. In this case. with their brains either partially or wholly destroyed. who. Nevertheless. lorber discovered that he had virtually no brain at all! Ordinarily. He was suffering from hydrocephalus .’ operates as a communications cable — much like the corpus callosum in the human brain . the Sheffield student lived a 133 . He has given many such cases in his books which lead to the conclusion that the full spectrum of consciousness exhibited by the biochemical brain does not originate there .MeTa-NeUrOlOGy | Chapter 15 elling. The autopsy revealed that there was practically nothing of the brain left in his brain pan . involving the entire cerebellum.

Tenants of the building where he worked described him as passing the days performing his routine chores. there are hundreds of cases of people with hydrocephalus . despite this. since the left side of the brain controls the right side of the body. Other Cases across the world. Such remarkable examples of adaptability are far more common than 134 . while one of the subjects proved to be as intelligent as those studying him. This case is not rare . the national average. James was only eight years old and suffered from a condition known as Sturge-Weber syndrome. a New yorker died at the age of 35 . and reading the tabloid newspapers . amazingly. however.’ yet they have scored up to 120 on IQ tests . The medical team knew that. Some of them he describes as having ‘no detectable brain. cavities form in the brain that can be so large that they account for 95% of the brain’s usual volume . too. but had worked at manual jobs such as a building janitor and was a popular figure in his neighbourhood . In this condition. 4 had IQ’s of above 100. a young boy. here referred to as James. Professor lorber has identified several hundred people who have very small cerebral hemispheres but who appear to be normal intelligent individuals . the only word in James’s vocabulary was ‘Mamma . Professor John lorber discovered that there is no relation between the volume of brain tissue and IQ . he had a first-class degree in Mathematics . In a study of hydrocephalus sufferers carried out by the University of Sheffield. was about to undergo a serious operation . which had caused the formation of abnormal blood vessels in the left hemisphere of his brain . James began to talk and.’ In an attempt to rectify the problem. and another 2 had IQ’s of above 126. two years later. Within weeks. Of the 253 subjects in the study. In 1970. such as tending the boiler. was close to reaching a normal mental age . What they did not expect. the operation to save James’s life would also leave him partially paralyzed .jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS perfectly normal life and went on to gain an honors degree in mathematics . In 1996 in the US. the operation to remove an entire hemisphere of his brain appears to have cured him of his learning difficulties . When an autopsy was performed to determine the cause of his premature death he. 9 were found to have approximately only 5% of the normal amount of brain tissue . were the developments in James’s condition which occurred soon after the surgery . He had left school with no academic achievements. was found to have practically no brain at all . doctors felt forced to take drastic steps — they decided to remove the entire left side of his brain . as a result he was afflicted by regular epileptic fits and had a very low mental age.

although there is much indirect evidence of the existence of dark matter (it is mentioned in every current textbook on physics and is estimated to contribute to more than 80% of the matter of the universe). adults have a harder time coping . which develops during life . Instead of substructures we have to turn our attention to super-structures . professor of anatomy at University College. It was also found that the instances in which brain loss do not interfere with normal life are cases where the condition 135 . but are still able to function normally . a neurologist at Boston’s Beth Israel Hospital agrees: ‘Certainly the brain has a remarkable capacity for reassigning functions following trauma. we have underestimated the work of the deep sub-cortical structures . this explanation cannot be carried too far . No scientist has any evidence that these sub-cortical structures in a normal brain can actually perform the cognitive functions currently attributed to the cortex . say that.MeTa-NeUrOlOGy | Chapter 15 we might think . one wonders if this explanation is tenable . In some patients there is so little brain left. there are literally hundreds of cases where people have either been born with an underdeveloped brain. scientists have studied the sub-cortical structures . Explanation? Some scientists believe that the remaining cortex takes over the functions once provided by the removed cortex . In conflict with established medical thinking. Norman Geschwind. perhaps. but you can usually pick up some kind of deficit with the right tests. ‘for hundreds of years neurologists have assumed that all that is dear to them is performed by the cortex. The Invisible Superstructure One explanation is that the physical-biomolecular brain is supported by an invisible superstructure. composed of dark matter. like Wall. or have had large areas of their brain damaged in an accident. current scientific instruments are unable to detect it directly . It had been noted previously that children who have undergone brain removal at an early age develop more or less normally (see Chapter 1) . ’ Some neuroscientists. but it may well be that the deep structures in the brain carry out many of the functions assumed to be the sole province of the cortex . ‘To talk of redundancy in the brain is an intellectual cop-out to try to get round something you don’t understand.’ says Patrick Wall. london . even after apparently full recovery . However.’ Nevertheless. There is cynicism on the question of the brain’s spare capacity to take over the functions provided by the parts of the brain that have been removed or damaged .

But it is also true that the pictures on the screen of the television set and the sounds coming from the speakers depend on the patterns of electrical activity inside the receiver . This time delay allows invisible superstructures of higher energy matter to form and link to the remaining visible structures . However. In other words. The access to the supercomputer’s processing power and memory by the biochemical brain is of course constrained by its own ‘hard and software . the evidence shows that this cannot be a substantive plasticity but a superficial plasticity which simply relocates the links to invisible higher energy body-brains . What we see in the cortex are ‘hyperlinks’ or ‘shortcuts’ (to use computer terminology) to the brains in higher energy bodies . Just as rat brains appear to cope with a stepwise reduction of available hardware. It is also true that different parts of the electrical circuitry are involved in the production of images and sounds . but if the same damage is done bit by bit over a long period of time. Gross surgical lesions in rat brains are known to inflict severe functional disruption. the dysfunction can be minimal . But this does not prove that everything you hear and see on television originates inside the receiver . It is easier to ‘cut and paste’ links from one folder to another on your computer rather than to move entire files . Modern scanning techniques show how particular parts of the brain ‘light up’ when particular mental activities are going on .’ Many of the advanced cognitive functions take place in the brains of higher energy (electromagnetic) bodies .jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS develops slowly . Medical science is right in pointing out that plasticity may be the key to understanding these cases of brain loss . The biomolecular brain merely acts as a mediator . Metaphysicist Charles leadbeater notes that there are ‘wires of communication’ between 136 . there is a transfer of ‘links’ from the cortex to the remaining parts of the brain that remain — not whole functions . so too do human brains in some cases of hydrocephalus . The Biomolecular Brain – A Dumb Terminal? It is true that some conscious experiences are associated with particular activities in particular parts of the brain . rupert Sheldrake 6 The brain merely acts as a mediator or a switchboard between higher energy bodies and its environment — or like a semi-intelligent computer terminal connected to an invisible universal supercomputer which carries out the more advanced mental functions .

It will subsequently be absorbed by the next higher energy body (effectively reincarnating into a new body) .10 137 . The first is a ‘template body . We also now realise (with some astonishment) that the structure of our brain has a profound effect on our post-mortem states . then there must be a correlation between the alternate mental and emotional bodies described by Brennan (and in general. The structured (or crystalline) body is associated with a ‘mental’ body. Post-Mortem States Brennan identifies four ‘physical bodies’ — the physical-biomolecular. respectively . alternate higher energy bodies undertake cognitive processes corresponding to the left and right brains .’8 leadbeater points out that every part of our (biomolecular) brain is mapped onto these higher energy bodies . different higher energy bodies are activated . The evolution of brain lateralisation in life-forms on earth (including human beings) allowed these life-forms to access the processing capabilities of higher energy body-brains in parallel super universes . with which we are familiar. during the death process (of the physical bodies). and the left and right brains. or vice-versa. Studies of split brain patients show that the localisation may be so pronounced that the two hemispheres are seen to represent almost two different persons living in a single body! The two minds (or persons) can even have different opinions about people and things . the metaphysical literature). and three other ‘physical-etheric’ bodies . Brain Lateralisation and Higher Energy Bodies Metaphysicist Barbara Brennan (a former NaSa scientist and now a ‘subtle energy healer’) observes that the higher energy bodies alternate between structured and structureless bodies . according to the metaphysical literature. which correlate with the right and left brains. and the structureless (liquid or fluidic) body an ‘emotional’ body . This means that when neural activity is shifted from the left to the right brain. respectively . 7 The nature of these bodies has been discussed in detail in the author’s book ‘Our Invisible Bodies . The fact that different brain activities are localised in the left and right hemispheres of the brain in a consistent manner has already been discussed in this book . It then travels through a meridian (which would appear to it to be a tunnel) in the template body and exits out of the head .MeTa-NeUrOlOGy | Chapter 15 the biomolecular brain and higher energy brains .9 If that is so.’ The second and third are the emotional and mental bodies. the mental body dissolves and contracts into the ‘physical-etheric nucleus’ around the heart region .

it would lose all capacity for objective. rational 138 . Hence. Novak says the conscious spirit then reincarnates into a new body .11 dr fredric Schiffer says that one of the most important findings of split-brain research is that each hemisphere of the brain has a mind of its own . Conversely. and would enjoy a heaven-type experience . The ‘unconscious’ emotional body. He hypothesises that in many people. will exhibit characteristics which will be similar to a left-brain damaged patient or the person in the right brain of a split-brain patient . The Unconscious Component (i. they may behave very differently from each other . So what happens to the emotional body (which is mapped onto our right brain)? If it does not dissolve.12 Similarly. and thereafter the unconscious soul enters into heaven or hell . during the death process. according to Novak. Novak describes the emotional body as the ‘soul’. The study of these split-brain patients would therefore throw much light on the behavior of our post-mortem minds which are separated — including dysfunctional spirits and ghosts . ‘division of Consciousness. the unconscious would suffer a hell-type experience . separated during the death process and correlated to our right brain. find these attributes to be its essential nature. (and conversely for the ‘conscious’ mental body) . there is a ‘division of consciousness’ as evidenced by the separation of the emotional body (which correlates to right brain awareness) and the mental body (which correlates to left brain consciousness) .jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS The physical-biomolecular body and the template body (which is closely integrated with it) will then start to disintegrate . upon condensing. when the mental and emotional bodies of the physical-etheric ensemble go their separate ways. it will ‘loiter’ in familiar places and subsequently be attracted to places where other similar bodies (with similar resonant frequencies) congregate . the Emotional Body) on Separation If a person had lived a life which brought peace and joy to his inner soul. and once parted from the conscious half.e. at death the unconscious would. and the mental body as the ‘spirit . This has been reported by Peter Novak in his book. emotions would come to fill the entire field of awareness of the emotional body. due to its absolute isolation from all outside stimuli.’ and is consistent with the metaphysical and religious literature . according to Swedenborg. one mind may be less mature and more disturbed by past trauma than the other .’ emanuel Swedenborg (the seventeenth century mystic) claims that following the post-mortem ‘life-review.’ a person’s conscious mind (correlated to the left brain) separates from the ‘unconscious’ mind (correlated to the right brain). and so would be felt on an absolute level of intensity .

‘But in our research.’ dr . emotionally-based patterns it had forged during life . fedio continues.) We know that processes in the right brain (normally associated with the ‘unconscious’) are unintentional and is automatically cued . The right brain functions like radar.13 according to NINdS (National Institute of Neurological disorders and Stroke. scanning for the blip on the screen — signs of negative emotion or danger — and alerts the left side . The unconscious (even in a living human being — as represented in the right brain) is not as individualised as the conscious component (as represented by the left brain) . pessimistic. and tense . If its judgments of its memories were self-approving.14 Similarly. subjective. Having lost the capacity for intelligent decisions. are normally described as ‘intelligent. These processes are unique to humans over age two and perhaps some language-trained apes .MeTa-NeUrOlOGy | Chapter 15 thought. ‘we found that with damage to the left brain. as pointed out by dr Schiffer above. psychological habits. ever-increasing joy. after a short individualised existence . but if those judgments were self-condemning. according to leadbeater. unending. 139 . and unresolved emotional complexes it possessed at the moment of death . determines the risk.) The sense of a separate identity and self-concept emanates from the discriminating left brain . the unconscious would find itself frozen in form. US) neuro-psychologist. the essence of the higher energy body representing the unconscious portion of the human being joins a group-soul. There is an absence of personal ‘will’ and intentionality .’ purposeful and intentional — an exercise of free will and individuality . the right brain becomes over-stimulated and runs out of control . We also know that these processes are common to all mammals .’) The left hemisphere analyses the situation. the corresponding emotional experience would be absolute. the brain’s two hemispheres normally work in tandem to judge emotions around us so we can make the right response . it would focus intently and feed blindly on the emotional content it has built-up over and over again . and since the unconscious is emotionally-oriented. The processes in the left brain (normally associated with the ‘conscious’). Paul fedio. permanently holding whatever opinions. on the other hand. the emotional responses would be absolute. and formulates a logical strategy . after a short stay in the higher energy ‘astral’ world . unable to think clearly.’ (a description that could easily fit some dysfunctional ghosts . the essence of the higher energy bodies of (generally unconscious) animals goes back to a group-soul. (The rate of development of the two brains. it would be doomed to remain in whatever automatic. unending. The patient becomes anxious. ever-increasing misery . can be quite different . (This ability is what may be sometimes called the ‘eQ .

each brain ‘stores’ in its memory the type of material that it is best at recognising. for example. It has brought into prominence the post-mortem division . It appears to address only the split of bodies at the lowest rung of the energy ladder . and language related memories. as each ensemble of bodies (with their emotional and mental components) ‘dies. and/or stores information in memory. in time.15 even before death. the conscious would not feel related or connected in any way to the world around it . it would not experience any feeling or emotion whatsoever . the conscious (i . each ensemble of higher energy bodies also vertically divides during the death process . has certain experiences. and expressing . often reported by family members shortly after the death. temporal-sequential. this information is not always available to the other brain.’ the mental and emotional bodies go their separate ways . It is not a split between all the mental and emotional bodies in the whole spectrum of higher energy bodies . all these non-individualised emotional bodies would gradually be attracted to each other and slowly coalesce and. and social-emotional memories . However. without the unconscious subjective perspective. one brain cannot always gain access to memories stored in the other brain . the mental body in Brennan’s model) will also be separated from its unconscious . Novak observed curiously (in contradiction to his theory) that ‘apparitions and visitations of the recently dead. with respect to the type of memories associated with the right brain . The higher energy groups of bodies which succeed the physical bodies also alternate with mental and emotional bodies . The left brain is responsible for the encoding and recall of verbal. In fact. whereas the right brain is dominant in regard to visual-spatial. processing. The splitting between the ‘soul’ and the ‘spirit’ (as explained in Novak’s book ‘division of Consciousness’) may be seen as the lowest horizontal division . It would be struck with amnesia. suggest that such souls are not suffering from 140 . and because magma bodies with similar physical properties naturally come together. the physical bodies vertically divide from the higher energy bodies during the death process of the physical bodies . The Conscious Component on Separation In leaving the dying body. it is incomplete . in the post-mortem state.16 according to Novak. when one brain learns.e .jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS Since the higher energy emotional body is a magma (magnetic plasma) body. 17 Completing the Picture Novak’s theory of a division of consciousness summarizes religious and metaphysical literature over several centuries . non-verbal. evolve into demonic or divine archetypes within the collective unconscious .

It’s as if the user had left and the computer just keeps re-executing a program from its memory . or has it not just caught up with them yet?’ The answer. Shades and Shells Novak should distinguish between what is commonly called ‘shades’ (which are debris discarded by the rising locus of awareness) in the metaphysical literature with fully living souls (with the spirit still invigorating it) . The unconscious fragments that were left behind are now not supported by higher intelligence .’ He then asks. when he finally breaks away from the lower frequency (astral) body and transfers his activities to the higher frequency (mental) body. ‘This gives a certain remnant of vitality to the astral corpse. he loses a little of himself .MeTa-NeUrOlOGy | Chapter 15 any after death division at all . ‘The question is. and may easily be mistaken by the ignorant for the man himself. and senses of identity still intact . that he identifies himself so closely with desires associated with lower frequency bodies) that the in-drawing force of the higher energy bodies and consciousness cannot entirely separate him from it again . memories.18 Contents and other structures. They may be considered left-over products — which have other uses in the wider scheme of things . based on the broader theory found in traditional metaphysical theories. Consequently. ‘there is no further development to the memories’ in these macroscopic bodies — they are repeatedly played out — and the bodies appear as automatons .’ he says . Such fragmentary consciousness. logic. with functional minds. or even whole bodies. leadbeater describes the abandoned astral 141 . Since the higher consciousness has been withdrawn. However. that cannot not be integrated with the ensemble of higher energy bodies which are seeking to go to a higher plane or sphere are expelled as soul fragments .leaving a remnant of himself in the lower frequency body . is ‘both . leadbeater says that in the course of his physical life the ordinary man usually entangles himself so much in (dark) astral matter (in other words.e . These souls have apparently not experienced the division predicted by the BSd [Binary Soul division] . further splits will occur as each higher energy ensemble (also consisting of mental and emotional bodies) ‘unzips’ and dies . the division]. These visitors from the next world seem to have all their wits about them. They are known variously as ‘shades’ or ‘shells’ in the metaphysical literature and have been written about extensively by leadbeater . so that it still moves freely in the astral world. still retains a person’s memories.’ The split did occur . but is only a partial and unsatisfactory representation of the person . says leadbeater. have they permanently avoided it [i .

It does not return to the higher energy bodies and consciousness to which it originally belonged as Novak implies ( just as matter belonging to a physical corpse is abandoned to the processes of Nature) . but without any trace of its former life. 20) at a later stage. The particles (particularly the lower energy particles) have been observed to eject from the head of a dying person by metaphysicists and even ordinary persons . the former nuclei of higher energy bodies) eventually generate higher energy emotional and mental bodies which are identical in composition to the previous bodies ( just as dNa can be used to create a clone of the original) .22 Memories become dormant in particles stored in higher 142 . which they call ‘sheaths’ or ‘koshas’ to liberate the divine spark (or divine void) from being trapped in manifested universes . When the astral corpse remains.’21 Influence of Resurrection Theories Novak’s theory implies that the discarded fragments (which are in reality corpses animated by residual energy — like inanimate objects which have picked up some electrostatic charge) should reunite again with the main body . as explained in the author’s book ‘Our Invisible Bodies’14 .the vibratory signatures of the stored incoming particles (i .jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS corpse with fragmentary consciousness and memories a ‘shade . a body similar (but not the same body) — a clone — is ‘resurrected’ using stored vibratory signatures . as what is implied in Novak’s and similar theories which lean towards the desert religions . it is also these stored memories (or samskaras in Hindu and Buddhist literature) that results in the dreaded cycles of births and deaths . encourage the abandonment of these bodies. This is similar to certain Christian resurrection theories — where a resurrected physical (primate) body is reunited with its owner . In fact. eastern religious theories. leadbeater says.’19 (Novak himself describes the ‘unconscious souls’ as ‘discarded’ unconscious minds .e . there is actually no urgent need to integrate with broken (macroscopic) soul pieces or fragments from the eastern religious point of view.’ they are stored in particles which continue to be linked to the spiritual body . even this fragment of consciousness dies out of the astral body (due to increasing entropy) . further encasements in bodies or memories would be detrimental to liberation . leadbeater describes it as a ‘shell . on the other hand. In other words. Resurrection or Reincarnation? This also means that while memories (in the form of the unconscious emotional bodies) are abandoned by the ‘ascending spirit. Therefore.

143 . Similarly. every time an individual reincarnates in a physical body. They are activated in the next downward cycle to reincarnation to produce similar bodies using new materials.MeTa-NeUrOlOGy | Chapter 15 energy bodies after they are ejected . rather than regenerating the old bodies . a resurrection of a new physical body takes place . through the operations of dNa (and its invisible superstructures).

relative to his functioning in the current universe (actually just this small planet) . The function of the brain and nervous system is to protect us from being overwhelmed and confused by this mass of largely useless and irrelevant knowledge. aldous Huxley2 144 . another inhibitor of visionary experience is ordinary. a person under the influence of mescalin or lysergic acid will stop seeing visions when given a large dose of nicotinic acid .’ he says . ‘each person is at each moment capable of remembering all that has ever happened to him and of perceiving everything that is happening everywhere in the universe. In this way.C H a P T e r 16 Universal Brain-Mind The brain is chemically controlled. everyday. the normally functioning brain acts as an inhibitor of certain types of experiences . aldous Huxley1 aldous Huxley is convinced that the function of the brain and nervous system and sense organs is in the main eliminative and not productive . and experience has shown that it can be made permeable to the superfluous aspects of Mind-at-large by modifying the normal chemistry of the body . perceptual experiences .

horizontal or tilted — but once that axis is chosen only the two results are possible . Things and Information according to Science reporter J r Minkel. holds 1s and 0s in the states of its component particles . The computational power required to generate a tiny living ant. It would not be difficult to incorporate logic gates and arithmetic units in these structures .UNIVerSal Br aIN-MINd | Chapter 16 A Gigantic Multi-Tiered Electronic Brain It is interesting to note that the higher energy (super) universes which are composed of magnetic plasma and filaments punctuated with galaxies resemble nerve fibers punctuated with neural cells in our brains . These outcomes could just as well be labeled ‘yes’ and ‘no. would be challenging even to our current supercomputers . Changes in those states could be called ‘computation.’ you can choose any axis to measure the spin along — vertical. which responds to multiple inputs from the environment and with its unique structure and behavior. in which a central processing unit carries out programs. The filamentary structures carry current — just as nerves (to some extent) do .’ information theory says that every physical system. The only possible outcomes of measuring an electron’s spin are ‘up’ and ‘down .’ all physical systems register and process information .4 von Baeyer says that (anton) Zeilinger’s conceptual leap is to associate bits with the building blocks of the material world . 3 These universes can operate as the many layers of a gigantic electronic brain (analogous to the cortex and sub-cortex in our biomolecular brain) inside which our own super magma brain-bodies live and think . only the computational power of a series of higher energy universes would suffice .’5 according to Seth lloyd in a paper called ‘Computational Capacity of the Universe. Unlike traditional computation. ‘1’ and ‘0 . Considering that there are maybe trillions of life-forms on this planet alone. The laws of physics determine the amount of information that a physical system can register and the number of elementary logic operations that a system can perform .’ just as your desktop machine computes by changing the information in its memory . 145 . This is the source of ‘universal intelligence’ and creativity . from a glass of water to a microchip. Computational Power erica Klarreich reports in the journal ‘Science News’ that plants may perform what scientists call distributed emergent computation . The universe is a physical system and the number of elementary operations it has performed to-date has been calculated to be 10120 operations on 1090 bits .’ or as in digital computers. in his article ‘If the Universe Were a Computer.

and intuition the top rung on the ladder of unconscious intelligence . may be similarly generated in a highly detailed computational process — where all parts of the universe are involved . and immune systems .’ But instinct is just the bottom rung. it is possible that they are harnessing the intuitive and computational powers of their brains (which are normally associated with our right brains) . how does a badger construct its dam? Given that the consciousness of these animals may not have evolved into self-consciousness to a degree evidenced in human beings. ‘from a single seed and a set of rules. Karmic Calculator you will never get out until you have paid the very last penny . Instead. we prefer to describe it as ‘instinctual . this concept is given the name ‘karma . emotion the middle rung. how does a spider spin an intricate web. They do not generally analyse (left brain-wise) but they intuitively find solutions to locate food and ward-off predators . ant colonies. Of course. Saying attributed to Jesus (of Nazareth) 8 accountability is a fundamental concept in many religions . There are many cases of animal intelligence . But is left-brain type of intelligence (associated with language) the only type of intelligence? animals may be largely intuitive in executing intelligent operations .’ Karma. Many biological systems appear to carry out this type of distributed computation — for instance.6 Steven levy asks.jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS distributed emergent computation lacks a central controller . largescale computations . nervous systems. animals do not verbalize but most large animals can visualise . from individuals to groups of living beings. structures that amazingly resemble natural snowflakes emerge on the computer screen . They are so similar to natural forms that they raise a question: does nature generate its own complex forms by a like mathematical process?’7 Intelligent Animal Behavior If the intelligent unconscious can intervene in our consciousness and life processes (as discussed in Chapter 3) is it not also possible that this could account for its intervention in Nature? How does a bee construct its mathematically precise honeycomb. large numbers of simple units interact with each other to achieve complex. Karma is a fundamental conservation law — every part of the universe is 146 . In eastern philosophies. yet the main reason why they are not considered intelligent is because they have not evolved language .

and interface with the electromagnetic patterns in the brain . have this ability to tap into these universes . they are much more extensive than our brains. while having its own memory. although similar thought-forms can influence and facilitate the final structure of the life-form. research on psychokinesis indicates a connection between mind and the external environment . ‘However. In this way mental fields can affect our bodies through our brains . We ‘r’ Us — Our Shared Brain Harman and rheingold believe that the research on remote viewing suggests that ‘the creative/intuitive mind could be getting information in ways other than from the lifelong learning of the person .’9 Information Fields rupert Sheldrake says that he sees minds as being ‘field-like’ and ‘mental fields’ as the basis for habitual patterns of thought . since all physical objects have their dark matter counterparts. clusters of galaxies. the universe and the multiverse as a whole . in the case of the biomolecular body. through. the galaxy. this is the dNa molecule) . Global Memory In 1908 leadbeater explained that there is an affinity between any particle of matter and the record which contains its history — an affinity which enables it to act as a kind of conductor between that record and the faculties 147 .UNIVerSal Br aIN-MINd | Chapter 16 accountable to the rest of the universe — and the whole multiverse is moving towards greater symmetry and entropy — consistent with the Second law of Thermodynamics .10 The higher energy universes have enormous computational power . serves at the same time as a storehouse of all thoughts generated on earth . The earth’s memory store can be accessed through what many metaphysicists call the ‘akashic records . they do not determine it — as what is being suggested by Sheldrake . larger mental bodies and storehouses of memories exist at the level of the Solar System. Mental fields go beyond.’ he says .’ These thought-forms can be considered ‘morphic fields’ which are generated and retained in the higher energy universes for some time .’ Nevertheless. reaching out to great distances in some cases. (What determines the forms are the bioparticles in each body. The earth’s higher energy magmaspheres. There is sympathetic resonance between similar thought forms so that they cluster and form ‘databases . autistic savants and the greatest scientists. Nevertheless. including einstein. research on telepathic communication suggests that we are all joined at a deep level.

It appears that cells in the brain are ‘hyperlinked’ to some non-local memory like the akashic records .jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS of anyone who can read it . the records simply form the background to whatever is going on . the full score of which the patients would be able to hum with total accuracy — much as an autistic savant would be able to reproduce music with a high accuracy — almost like a recording machine . Science reporter 13 records imprinted on the zero point field are the ‘akashic records’ of metaphysicists . If music was involved. This suggests that we use the shared (information processing) services of a much larger brain with other human beings . lynne McTaggart. The scenes always moved forward. involving the use of a local anesthetic to open up and operate on a patient’s exposed brain while the patient remained fully conscious . as you move closer and focus on what is going on in a particular scene. and only forward — and never still . the patient began to describe a complete flashback to an episode from earlier in his life . you are immediately in the 148 . Some scientists like to think of records being mirrored in the zero point field: If all subatomic matter in the world is interacting constantly with this ambient ground-state energy field. according to leadbeater. this followed the precise original tempo. as the harbinger and imprinter of all wavelengths and all frequencies. Under such conditions they merely reflect the mental activity of a greater consciousness on a far higher plane 14 — which is accessible to us . a mirror image and record of everything that ever was . Wilder Penfield developed a surgical procedure for epileptics. We are in a sense living in a much larger brain . This enabled Penfield to perform remedial treatment and at the same time use the opportunity to map out the functions of different areas of the brain cortex . This forms the ‘memory’ of the universal brain-mind .’ 12 from the 1930s onwards. Observing the dynamic and visual akashic records would be like watching the larger brain’s movie from a distance . the subatomic waves of the [zero point] field are constantly imprinting a record of the shape of everything . the zero point field is a kind of shadow of the universe for all time. The scenes through which we pass in the course of our life seem to act in the same manner upon the cells of our brain through which our mind is put en rapport with particular portions of ‘the (akashic) records . The temporal lobe has also been implicated in near-death experiences . When he applied his electrode to the patient’s temporal lobe. if the observer is not focusing on them.

The ‘akashic records’ and ‘Universal Mind’ have also been referred to at various times and places as the ‘Hall of records’ and ‘Hall of Knowledge’ . at different times. The records have been referred to by different names including the Cosmic Mind. Some describe these records as similar to a Cosmic or collective consciousness . Cayce Scholar The ‘akashic records’ was a term coined by the Theosophical movement (which originated in the 19 th century) and referred to a universal filing system which records every thought. Nevertheless. and action . there exist many libraries or record repositories such as the akashic library throughout the universe. which exist in abundance in the higher energy planes or spheres . the Universal Mind. on various planes of existence . Neither can you change anything in the scene . The akashic records resemble a library and has also been compared to a universal computer (some have described it as the ‘Mind of God’) . the rate at which ‘the story unfolds’ can be altered . The records are said to have existed since the beginning of Creation . surrounded by all the characters . These records are embedded in the ‘akasha’ — which is the Sanskrit word for ‘sky’. word. Kevin Todeschi. What you are seeing is in the past — and sometimes in the future (our past or future is relative to our frame of reference) . the collective unconscious. to different degrees are and have been able to access the akashic records. In this way. a person can time travel as an observer. different people. in different ways.15 It is possible that if the right brain is not shielded effectively from the usually dominant left brain (the ‘theory maker’) many errors will arise when reading the records .UNIVerSal Br aIN-MINd | Chapter 16 scene. ‘space’ or ‘ether’ . without violating causality . It is a complete and thorough record of everything 149 . Some writers believe that free from and independent of all religions and faiths. or the collective subconscious . leadbeater warns that the akashic records must not be confused with mere man-made thought-forms. apparently accessible via our subconscious mind . Brief History of the Akashic Records The akashic records or ‘The Book of life’ can be equated to the universe’s super computer system . It is this system that acts as the central storehouse of all information for every individual who has ever lived upon the earth . There are various databases covering different subjects . The characters of course cannot see you .

Chaldeans. When asked about the source of 150 . later. Chinese. david makes reference to the fact that God has written down everything about him and all the details of his life — even that which is imperfect and deeds which have yet to be performed . energetic echo field.’ Bruce considers the records to be an energetic medium as opposed to the common belief that the records are a structured ‘esoteric repository’ . including the Indians. both in the Old and New Testaments . the austrianborn philosopher who lived up to the early twentieth century. those who could read the ‘akasha’ were held in high standing and were often found advising Pharaohs on daily activities and dream interpretation . in energetic form . we learn that there is nothing about an individual that is not known in this same book .’ and that if one attuned oneself then one could read that book . named Tajao. including the thoughts and feelings of every individual. druids. [different] levels of the akashic records can be accessed and perceived [or viewed] in various ways during an out-of-body experience. egyptians. and Mayans . all through time . The belief is that the ancient Indian sages of the Himalayas knew that each soul recorded every moment of its existence in a ‘book. with the most common being the traditional “library” scenario . The well-respected australian metaphysicist robert Bruce defines the akashic records as ‘an infinite. possessed the ability to perceive information beyond the material world: a ‘spiritual world’ which was just as real to him as the physical world was to others . Greeks. a Chinese seer named Sujujin was reported to need only the first name of anyone to access the records and describe their life history. Moors. even offering to have his own name struck ‘out of thy book which thou hast written’ to compensate for the wrong-doing . Hebrews. Moses pleaded to God on their behalf. explored a variety of topics in the records which span over two thousand years . It was believed that the druid cultures of england and Wales demonstrated the ability to access the records . Persians. Some who believe in the records claim that they were used by ancient peoples around the world. it is said.jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS that has ever occurred. In egypt. inter-dimensional. rudolf Steiner. another Chinese seer. Tibetans. in the Old Testament. The first reference in the Scripture to some mysterious book is found in exodus 32:32 . The famous seer Nostradamus was claimed to have gained access to the records . Christians. containing perpetual echoes [similar to the zero point field] generated by each and every act of consciousness. The Bible mentions the records as a ‘Book of life’ on several occasions. never-ending. and founder of the anthroposophical Society. In Psalm 139. after the Israelites committed a most grievous sin by worshiping the golden calf.

UNIVerSal Br aIN-MINd | Chapter 16 his information. ‘The record that the individual entity itself writes upon the skein of time and space…’18 World-renowned Cayce scholar Kevin Todeschi says that ‘The edgar Cayce readings suggest that each of us writes the story of our lives through our thoughts. a state of unification and awareness can be achieved in which even the future responses are known with absolute clarity instead of only as a probability . In fact. the akashic seer or reader can investigate probable future responses and give the highest future probability. Accessing the Records every human being contributes and has access to the akashic records . yogic breathing and visualisations) can be employed to quiet the mind to achieve the focused. our deeds. its hereditary influence. Various techniques (e . however. When viewing the future. including witnessing several alternate endings to the main characters in a movie . Based on a modern interpretation (and a simple substitution of terms) the akashic records would be said to be written on this spacetime manifold . preconscious state necessary to access the records . The akashic records are said to be visible and are often compared to seeing a full color movie with a plot and characters . Based on an individual’s responses in the past. 16 Records Etched in the Fabric of Reality einstein displaced the theory of the ether with his 1905 Special Theory (of relativity) and then resurrected the concept with the idea of a spacetime manifold in his 1915 General Theory (of relativity) . as directed — or judgment drawn by or according to what the entity’s ideal is . at some point in the evolution of the akashic reader. replied that there were essentially two: The first was the subconscious mind of the individual for whom he was giving the reading and the second was the akashic records . and our interactions with the rest of creation’ — echoing lynne McTaggart’s description of the dynamic interaction of the universe with the zero point field . the deeds. the renowned clairvoyant (who died in 1945). edgar Cayce 17 When Cayce was asked to explain what was meant by ‘The Book of life’ he replied that it was. edgar Cayce.g . the activities of an entity — as in relationships to its environs. the events are known. but the responses are only probable . edgar Cayce said just that: Upon time and space is written the thoughts. 151 .

images on a television or movie screen.jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS It is believed by some that the events recorded on the akashic records can be ascertained or read in certain states of consciousness — which can be induced by certain stages of sleep. We also have the ability to access the records in our dreaming state .is in direct communication with all other subconscious minds. Certain persons in subconscious states do read the akashic records . It may often be presented as a library of books. quite frequently. Instead of being limited to information and experiences that are accessible from the biomolecular brain he or she now has an expanded consciousness (and effectively using a larger brain) that is capable of receiving the accumulated knowledge of millions of people over thousands and tens of thousands of years . over time. The collective subconscious includes a network of subconscious minds which can be read by other subconscious minds . dr Wesley Ketchum described Cayce’s method: ‘Cayce’s subconscious . an explanation for this phenomenon is that the akashic records are the macrocosm of the individual subconscious mind . who assist the police in investigations. to be accessing these records . and meditation — so not only mystics but ordinary people can and do perceive the akashic records . There he begins to be able to perceive this universal knowledge . according to dr daniel Condron . gathering in this way all knowledge possessed by endless millions of other subconscious minds . illness. The information received in precognitive dreams (clairvoyant dreams relating to an event or a state not yet experienced) is often said to be ultimately derived from the akashic records . They are not 152 . appear also. . see Chapter 2) . learns to restrain mental activities in the conscious mind (often associated with the left brain) and to go deeper and deeper within the subconscious mind (which is often associated with the right brain) until it merges with the ‘bedrock’ — the Universal Mind . Someone who meditates regularly. Some psychics who do past life readings claim to receive their information from the akashic records . The intuitive mind (associated with the right brain) of the individual acts as a bridge between the discriminating mind (associated with the left brain) and the Universal Mind (as noted in the lankavatara Sutra. drugs. or perhaps even on a computer . edgar Cayce did his readings in a sleep state or trance . one single book. and is capable of interpreting through his objective mind [normally associated with the left brain] and imparting impressions received to other objective minds.’ apparently Cayce was interpreting the collective subconscious mind long before the psychiatrist C G Jung postulated his concept of the collective unconscious. . It is believed that the akashic records make clairvoyance and psychic perception possible .19 access to the akashic records will differ from person to person . weakness. forensic psychics.

as described by the metaphysicist. incidentally sounds very similar to a life review during a near-death experience. Heindel explains. so intimate that probably not he himself during life. Napoleon. for example. so to speak. every thought. we will call up in our mind at one flash the whole record of his life . realised himself as perfectly as we shall then . or much more in some cases — and they appear almost as the pictures on a screen . but we shall obtain at once the essence of his whole existence . the akashic records may be read in different modes . However. In the lower energy ‘etheric plane’ there are pictures of all that has happened in the world — at least several hundred years back. or any other man or event in history. no matter how secret. In order to see an event unfolding in ‘everyday sequence’ (with the arrow of time pointing forward). will be known to us with all the motives and everything that led up to the event. the ordinary conclusion would be that we should be able to write books that would explain all these things in the most accurate and comprehensive manner . Heindel advises us to rewind to a point in time before the event we are interested in . Heindel explains that anyone 153 . Modes of Access according to Max Heindel’s paper on the ‘Memory of Nature’. ‘Neither will this picture or thought or knowledge be outside ourselves. or before the date when history was written. within ourselves. This picture will speak to our inner consciousness and give us a thorough understanding of his life and purpose . so that we stand as spectators and look at the life of luther. Charles leadbeater . but the picture will be.’20 This experience. though many people see them as such when they access them. and every act. In a ‘higher world’ the ‘Memory of Nature’ is read in an entirely different manner. if we concentrated our thoughts on the historical Martin luther. Then the scenes will roll forward in orderly sequence ( just as Penfield’s patients saw the scenes moving forward) until we come to the episode we are interested in . and thus we shall obtain a most thorough understanding of the life of luther.UNIVerSal Br aIN-MINd | Chapter 16 actual books or scrolls. but they are actually energetic vibrations that are translated into these images and forms to make it accessible to our consciousness . covering the essence of a whole life or event . no matter how well concealed. There will be neither beginning nor end.21 Difficulty in Translating into Temporal Sequences Having obtained such an intimate and thorough knowledge of luther. We shall feel whatever he felt and obtain a perfect understanding of what the man was from the cradle to the grave . and we will feel ourselves as if we were actually luther . Calvin.

The records appear to have a tremendous influence upon our everyday lives. but we are unable to utter it . according to ernesto Ortiz. To arrange what was ‘seen’ and ‘heard’ and ‘felt’ in that state of consciousness into consecutively arranged ideas in conventional time is next to impossible .jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS who has tried to read the ‘Memory of Nature’ as kept in that high region will testify that they have felt just that way when they left the reading and returned to their ordinary brain consciousness . the akashic records are said to be interactive . the akashic records are much more than simply an account of static data which may be gleaned by a sensitive. In the highest regions.) They embody an ever-changing fluid array of possible futures that are called into potential as we interact and learn from the data that has already been accumulated . and transform every individual to become the very best that she or he can be .22 This frustration is also a common one heard among neardeath experiencers . our relationships. the most attenuated shadow of the glorious reality’. Interaction with the Present Much more than simply a memory storehouse. (a description that will be familiar to near-death experiencers who have undergone life reviews . thought must be manifested through the brain and to be intelligible to others it must be translated into sentences consecutively unfolding the ideas to be conveyed . all things are included in an eternal here and now: there is neither time nor space. russian immigrant. They are the unbiased judge and jury that attempt to guide. laments Heindel . No one who has not felt this limitation on coming back from the ‘Heaven World’ with such valuable information can realise the chagrin and despair which one feels when he endeavors to do this. It simply refuses to filter through the brain. says Heindel . mystic. Heindel explains. ‘We who have seen and heard know what we have seen and heard. They draw us toward or repel us from one another . However. There is no human language or tongue that can translate these things in an adequate manner and give to another anything but the faintest feeling. references in the Old Testament and beyond give us the sense that there is a collective storehouse of knowledge that 154 . and the potential realities we draw toward us . the records have an ongoing creative stimulus upon the present . educate. instead. The records connect each one of us to one another . and founder of the Theosophical Society. according to Heindel . according to Helena Blavatsky (who lived in the nineteenth century). our feelings and belief systems. beginning nor end . They contain the stimulus for every archetypal symbol or mythic story and have been the inspiration for dreams and inventions .

This is of course what often happens during a near-death experience when persons who have undergone a near-death experience report a ‘life review . beneath our everyday consciousness. merges with a collective unconscious — through which we may be able to receive insights otherwise denied to us . above the surface of the water there is a sense of separate existence. Personal awareness. These records connect each one of us to one another and have an effect upon us. the memory. here and now . Cayce described his experience as follows: ‘I see myself as a tiny dot out of my physi155 . would provide us with deep insights into the nature of ourselves and our relationship with the universe . He dictated 14 million words while in this state of wider awareness . Life Reviews during Near-Death Experiences Cayce has stated that each person will be held accountable and will be ‘confronted’ with his or her own personal akashic record of what they have or not done in life. this vast complex of computer systems and collective databases cannot begin to come close to the power. universal. with definite boundaries where the shore meets the sea . Collective Unconscious Jung’s description of the collective unconscious has similarities with the akashic records. he says . in the after life .e . or the recording capacity of the akashic records. His findings suggest that we all have this ability to tap into this information — truly the collective unconscious — but few of us can bring it to conscious awareness . it is claimed. edgar Cayce discovered that he could put himself at will into the state of mind in which he could tap into this reservoir of knowledge . the island is connected to all the other islands . the Cosmic Mind and ‘cosmic consciousness’ .UNIVerSal Br aIN-MINd | Chapter 16 is written on the fabric of reality . The akashic records contain the entire history of every soul (i . The amount of information now stored in computer memory and crossing the Internet highway daily is literally unfathomable . These primordial images are the most ancient. the echo of prehistoric world events to which each century adds an infinitesimal small amount of variation and differentiation . the records have such an impact upon our lives and the potentials and probabilities we draw toward us that any exploration of them. Beneath the surface however. Jung describes the collective unconscious as the all controlling deposit of ancestral experiences from untold millions of years. It is a general metaphysical belief that individual human consciousness is like an island in a vast ocean of countless other islands . In fact. and deep thoughts of mankind .’ In discussing the process for accessing the akashic records. and yet. its ‘world line’) since the dawn of Creation .

Cayce had the ability to select the information which would be most capable of assisting the individual at that time in his or her life . Next. available from the ‘Internatonal association for Near-death Studies’. The ‘high density of information’ was described by one reporting individual as enabling him to count every nearby mosquito. and singing of birds . there begin to appear on either side vague outlines of houses. Upon the first levels there are vague. without ceiling. as I pass on. but equally common is the description of feeling the emotional experience of the other parties. .’23 Once given the record. With the growth of movement I become conscious of sounds. laughter. etc . grotesque forms such as one sees in nightmares . others narrate the experience as including 156 . trees. but that the individual was being given that which would be ‘most helpful and hopeful .Suddenly. Quite suddenly I come upon a hall of records . I move upward following the light…as I move along this path of light I gradually become conscious of various levels upon which there is movement . Then the direction changes and these forms move upward and the color of the robes grows rapidly lighter . a record of the individual for whom I seek information . . again there is change and I become conscious of gray-hooded forms moving downward . This and many other similarities lead to the conclusion that the akashic records are being accessed in the life reviews during neardeath experiences . there is more light and movement in what appears to be normal cities and towns . walls. frequently. horrible shapes. but that of all other parties they interacted with at each point being reviewed . While some accounts appear to describe scenes as selected. In a life review. experiencers frequently describe their life reviews as ‘panoramic’ or ‘holographic’ . the experiencer’s perception includes not only their own perspective in increased vividness. including in one case virtually everyone in a room .jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS cal body. these become lighter in color . which lies inert before me . I am conscious of a white beam of light . then music. It is a hall without walls. Passing on. The term ‘3d’ is also employed to describe the inclusion of different physical perspectives onto a scene . as this tiny dot. Gradually. as if they were reliving a given episode. Cayce’s account above could ‘pass-off’ easily as a near-death experience . a reading might suggest that only a selection of the available material was being provided. but everything is motionless . there begin to appear on either side misshapen forms of human beings with some part of the body magnified .’ additional insights were frequently provided in subsequent readings once an individual had attempted to work with and apply the information which had been given previously . Based on records. at first indistinct rumblings. but I am conscious of seeing an old man who hands me a large book..

’ you may watch your life from a second person’s point of view . described reading the akashic records . This is why it has been repeated often that reading the akashic records would have a beneficial effect on your personal development . ‘I was astonished that I could understand so much information at such a speed . viewing scenes of your life at a tremendous speed. Without turning your head. your motives for everything will be as visible as your actions . learning their motives behind their actions). but at tremendous speed . reliving every detail of every second of your life. This is very similar to how leadbeater. indeed. with the scenes of your life skipping from one scene to another. It has even been described as viewing hundreds of television screens with each screen showing a home movie of one event in your life . one near-death experiencer recounted. viewing scenes of your life in little bursts. with square screens up and down the walls and on the ceiling . at random. These include instantly ‘becoming’ everyone you came in contact with in your entire life (feeling their emotions. you literally become every person that you’ve ever encountered . a vivid 3d color display of your entire life or segments of your life . life reviews have been described as viewing a movie. These variations in the speed of the reviews and selections of specific ‘clips’ are characteristics of a deliberate review — very similar to a reading 157 . a video. Betty eadie recounted that her life appeared before her in the form of what we might consider extremely well defined holograms. ‘playing in the dirt in the front yard . and viewing past lives and/or your future .UNIVerSal Br aIN-MINd | Chapter 16 details that they had long forgotten . Betty eadie. in fast-forward mode. viewing a few special deeds in your life and replaying a part of your life review to focus on a particular event for instruction. and scent . in order to focus on a particular detail of your life . you may also enter the scene and relive your entire life with scenes of your life projected around you. you may even see how many leaves were on the tree when you were six years old. sound. every emotion. Cognition expands dramatically . you may see your past. and every thought simultaneously and the way you dealt with others and how others dealt with you. thinking their thoughts. you will feel what it feels like to be that person and you will feel the direct results of your interaction between you and that person . The life review. present and future . Some have described it as viewing a three-dimensional hologram of your life in full color. living their experiences. has many interesting characteristics which are similar to a reading of the akashic records .’ you relive your life when you have a life review in 360 degrees panorama . The scenes can also go into a preview mode. in slow-motion or paused.

Clairvoyance Clairvoyance is defined as a form of extra-sensory perception whereby a person perceives distant objects. remote viewing is often done in conventional time. although some have reported to have crossed into the past or future . or events. However. action. Nevertheless. ‘remote viewing’ is closely related to clairvoyant abilities . Pre-cognitive dreams are a special category of ‘dream clairvoyance’ which appears to tell us that time may be an illusion (i . which is hidden from physical view of the viewer and typically separated from the viewer by some distance .. radio waves) . persons. apparently to strengthen you with love .e . The beings may pause the review for awhile if you are upset. thing or place using touch. The beings merely facilitate the review . it is not the same in different frames of reference) . It had been reported that in some instances psychics working with the CIa were asked to spy on Soviet military bases in their dreams . the review will feel like a fact-finding rather than a fault-finding review . numbers and universal codes — similar to how some autistic savants and geniuses view their ‘solutions’ on their ‘mental screens . you are the judge . They witness everything you did. person. such perceptions are reported in visual terms. and event that has ever occurred since the beginning of time leaves 158 . and the opportunities missed or not received . including seeing through opaque objects and the detection of types of energy not normally perceptible to humans (for example.jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS or review of the akashic records . such as. but may also include auditory or touch impressions . Typically. place. The review can take place before a ‘Council of elders’ who are seated at a table or even in an amphitheater the size of a sports stadium filled with light beings who will observe your review . is based on the metaphysical belief that every thought. Psychometry. the pain inflicted upon you. It allows a ‘viewer’ to gather information on a ‘target’ consisting of an object.’ a less contemporary type of review may be of a higher being reading from a Book of life (for Christian experiencers) or a being reading from the akashic records (for Hindu experiencers) . They also take into consideration various aspects about your life. They had many remarkable successes and were able to provide verifiable information about the chosen targets . or the ability to know about the history of a person. even in secret . your dreams may already spontaneously reveal clairvoyant knowledge about distant locations or the future . etc . what you were taught. how you were raised. Contemporary experiencers may also see a screen that displays a tremendous amount of scientific data.

With no clues to go on. Many clairvoyants who tune into the past. as leadbeater pointed out. That night. a desperate family member contacts Weber — who ‘sees’ that the boyfriend is innocent. blame each other. While shooting pool in a louisiana bar. including psychic detectives or forensic psychics. The psychics often felt the pain of the victim and in some cases viewed the crime scene from the attacker’s point of view . so investigators turned to Kerr. a flooded creek during an unexpected storm rips two children from their mother’s arms and they go missing . he disappears . first think her boyfriend did it . a teenage girl vanished on her way home from school . each cell in the brain seems to be linked to certain portions of the akashic records . a great deal of contemporary information on the akashic records has been made available by both reputable psychics and modern-day mystics — individuals who have somehow perceived beyond the limits of three dimensions . who. Cayce Scholar Cayce alluded to the fact that the akashic records were not simply a transcription of the past but included the present. The suspects. andre daigle meets a beautiful and mysterious woman . and gives police details that help undo the real killer’s alibi . and her son gravely injured . New Jersey police. This is obviously very similar to reading the akashic records or undergoing a life review in a near-death experience . tapping into the fallen wife’s ‘vibration. Kevin Todeschi. In one case. Psychometric skills have therefore been closely linked to the ability to read the akashic records . are believed to read the akashic records in order to get their information . trying to solve the murder of a woman bludgeoned to death in her own bed. the future. New Orleans investigators are stumped when a young mother turns up beaten to death. They were literally re-living the events . The role of forensic psychics in fighting baffling crimes appears to be growing . andre’s family calls in psychic rosemarie Kerr. whose remarkable visions provide the answers . Psychic dr Sally Headding helps track them down using clairvoyance .UNIVerSal Br aIN-MINd | Chapter 16 an impression on the ‘ether’ (now interpreted as einstein’s spacetime manifold or the zero point field) . The police contacted psychic Nancy Orlen Weber who offered uncannily accurate descriptions of the crime. and certain 159 .’ discovers a truth that breaks the case . the husband and his friend. Is it a Record or an Alternate Reality? Closer to our current era. the suspect and where he’s been hiding — using her clairvoyance .

Just as we envision all of space as really being out there.jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS probabilities as well . dumb and blind kid sure plays a mean pinball! How do you think he does it? I don’t know! The Who. The fabric of the Cosmos einstein’s block universe bears a strong resemblance to descriptions of the nature of the akashic records in higher planes — by edgar Cayce. while the past no longer exists and the future does not yet exist .’ In a sense time becomes ‘spatialised’ i . leadbeater reported that on a ‘very high plane’ the past. all events are fully determined. Max Heindel said that in a ‘higher world’ the ‘Memory of Nature’ is read in an entirely different manner. we should also envision all of time as really being out there.’ [emphasis addded . we generally believe that only the present is real. as really existing too . The question now arises: are the dynamic akashic records being continuously written or is it simply an alternate reality where time is absent or diluted? When we ‘read’ the akashic records. Brian Greene. ‘Pinball Wizard’ 160 .e . Charles leadbeater and other metaphysicists . covering the essence of a whole life or event .’ 24 [emphasis added . analogous to a landscape — with all past and future events located there together . are we peering into another reality where the measure of time is different. it behaves as a spatial dimension . He gives the analogy of a passenger in a train .] leadbeater apparently anticipated einstein’s ‘block universe’ concept and the relativity of simultaneity through his direct experience with super universes . Max Heindel. and none are contingent . ‘Human experience is temporal . as really existing. Paul davies says. Hence. relative to the reality we are viewing it from? Are the Akashic Records in the Brain? That deaf. if he could never leave the train nor alter its pace. In 1899. We also frequently believe that the future is indeterminate and contingent . and future all exist simultaneously .] This is generally described as the ‘block universe’ concept in physics . would probably consider the passing landscapes as necessarily successive and would be unable to conceive their coexistence . present and future are all existing simultaneously . ‘The passenger. in the block universe past. ‘Physicists prefer to think of time as laid out in its entirety — a ‘timescape’. By contrast. present. Physicist.

’ Oliver Sacks wrote 161 . experience difficulty communicating. as these two paths of investigation converge. and feats of memorization . More than a dozen genes may contribute to autism . They are ‘savants . When these areas are damaged. many of our long-held notions about the limits of human potential are being overturned . Neuroscientists say that these tasks draw primarily on the strengths of the brain’s right hemisphere. from the limbic system to the executive functions in the frontal lobes that enable us to absorb new experiences. One had memorized ‘The decline and fall of the roman empire’ after reading it a single time . and trump the house in Vegas . the enhanced skills of savants cluster in the same narrow domains: numerical and calendar calculation. using both gene mapping and PeT scans . we are at the mercy of a flood of incoming sensory impressions and conflicting impulses . in many savants. Many savants are left-handed. Savant syndrome itself is rare . and often struggle to lead a normal life . The rarest of the rare is the prodigious savant. when a small number of people in european asylums classified as feebleminded ‘idiots’ were discovered paradoxically to have extraordinary. count 246 toothpicks at a glance. However. Neuroscientists believe that ‘savants tap into areas of the mind that function like supercomputers. what is baffling about derek and Stephen is that they have IQs of less than 60. though they could barely speak . Others were able to multiply long columns of numbers instantly and factor cube roots in seconds.’ Savants are people who possess severe disabilities along with flashes of brilliance .’ derek Paravicini is a highly acclaimed jazz pianist who plays regularly with top names to packed houses . Stephen Wiltshire’s gift is art. indicating that. a healthy right hemisphere is overcompensating for damage to the left .UNIVerSal Br aIN-MINd | Chapter 16 researchers are probing the savant mind from the inside. and most have deficits in language — additional clues that something is amiss in the left hemisphere . prioritize tasks. set goals. and books of his drawings have quickly become best sellers around the world . Several other forms of mental impairment also produce islands of startling ability — known as splinter skills . for savants. artistic and musical proficiency. like raymond Babbitt (portrayed in the movie ‘rain Man’) who could memorize phone books. Geneticists are also starting to identify dNa anomalies in savants from birth . according to scientists. asking for a birth date is a common way of introducing themselves . even uncanny skills . The term savant dates from the late 19th century. mechanical aptitude. compiling massive amounts of data from the senses to create a working model of the world . autism rewires the brain’s entire network. and imagine the future . In ‘The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat. In every culture.

They point out that in many cases of reincarnation. where there is unexplainable and spontaneous knowledge from birth. Metaphysicists generally appeal to reincarnation theory for such spontaneous knowledge .] The drawing abilities of most savant artists. suddenly develop aptitudes for music and art when their language faculties are destroyed by the disease . located in the higher regions of the cortex. we need to examine one of the oldest. and no practice — as if their skills were already there. turned toward abstraction and painted even more expressively as her verbal skills declined . says Treffert. began composing classical music soon after the onset of dementia. they also get better . an archive of involuntary stimulus/response loops — the memory that never forgets how to ride a bike . these patients experience curious perceptual alterations. They told Sacks that they saw prime numbers just ‘appear in their minds’ . no training. darold Treffert says. Habit memory is Pavlovian. a 78-year-old linguist. One patient. he felt that his mind was being ‘taken over’ by notes and intervals . and sounds . least-evolved regions of the brain: the primitive storehouse of memory . It’s not that savants remember everything. an established landscape artist. The software comes preinstalled .’ he says. He posited that the dementia does 162 . the ancient pathways in the basal ganglia known as habit memory. take over . Treffert is convinced that some savants do not have to learn the algorithms involved in tasks like calendar calculating . ‘and start talking about the genetic transmission of knowledge . visual patterns. though he had little musical training. it’s that they are unable to forget anything . Brain scans of fronto-temporal dementia patients confirm patterns of damage similar to those found in many savants . Treffert believes that when associative memory systems. fail older parts of the brain. Bruce Miller now believes that as some patients with fronto-temporal dementia get worse. there is no genetic link between the biomolecular body of the reincarnated person and his previous biomolecular body . needing only access to a pencil or a brush . for example. ‘you have to go beyond talking about traits. To understand how mentally retarded savants can do such complex calculations subconsciously.jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS about the twins who amused themselves for hours trading six-digit prime numbers — although they were incapable of performing even simple multiplication . burst forth with no preparation.’ [emphasis added . fully fledged. another patient. becoming more attentive to textural details. Impairment Uncovers Genius San francisco neurologist Bruce Miller noticed that certain people diagnosed with fronto-temporal dementia. as the disease progresses.

it would appear highly coincidental that a single savant can display several of these peculiar skills and that the same skills are found in savants across cultures.’ Our knowledge and expertise blind us .’ ‘enlightenment’ or ‘union with the divine . allan Snyder has built on the work of Treffert and others to suggest that autistic savants have ‘privileged access’ to the mind’s raw data before it is parsed and filtered by the brain’s executive functions . have absolute pitch because they tap directly into the discrete frequency receptors in the cortex without any left-hemisphere meddling .g . it uncovers them . e . and Christian contemplatives. another view is that savants have more highly developed brains in specific domains . This implies that meditative practices can also be used to ‘uncover our genius’ . Some believe that savants acquire their peculiar skills like any normal person. Buddhism. Savant artists draw with exceptional accuracy. he says. enabling suppressed talents in the right hemisphere to flourish . some neurologists are asking whether there might be a way for the average person to switch on these hidden skills without having to suffer the kinds of brain trauma seen in Miller’s dementia patients . we could have a momentary literal viewing of the world . The disorder switches-off inhibitory signals from the left temporal lobes. These explanations do not fit well with reports that savant skills can emerge ‘spontaneously’.UNIVerSal Br aIN-MINd | Chapter 16 not create artistic powers in these patients. following an accident or at the onset of fronto-temporal dementia. Musical savants. The computational abilities of savants may give them glimpses of the world as it really is . If we could switchoff our conceptual mind. argues Snyder . at the ‘Centre for the Mind’ in Sydney. 163 . furthermore. and that these skills do not improve qualitatively with time. because ‘they see the world as it really is . Instant Genius as new research reveals more areas of untapped potential in the brain. an alternative explanation is that savant skills are largely innate. even though they may become better articulated . have always looked at concepts as barriers to ‘realisation. Hinduism and other eastern meditative traditions. he believes. [emphasis added .’ Buddhism has always insisted that we need to see things ‘as they really are’ . through repetitive practice .] allan Snyder you would be excused if you thought that the above verse was taken from some ancient Buddhist scripture .

and their proofreading skills also improve. To test this hypothesis. both in the case of ‘born savants’ and savants who emerged later in life due to fronto-temporal lobe dementia . [Savant skills] are not normally accessible without a rare form of brain impairment.’ Similar to what Michael Persinger had been doing with his ‘God Helmet . The intent of our study is not to devise a clinical application.’ 25 Snyder believes he is switching-off the conceptual mind by creating ‘virtual lesions’ in the left temporal lobes . Because of their brain impairment. recent experimental findings are consistent with the possibility that savant-like skills are accessible (can be switched on) by turning-off (disinhibiting) the part of the brain that inhibits access to such skills . Three of the four ‘facilitated’ participants experienced altered psychological states after stimulation .jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS requiring little or no practice . according to Snyder. 27 We emphasise that these changes are due to the inhibiting influence of low frequency transcranial magnetic stimulation . [emphasis added . draw more naturalistically.’ Snyder delivered the inhibiting treatment for 15 minutes at either 0 . low frequency magnetic stimulation inhibits brain activity thereby creating ‘virtual lesions . Snyder says. not exciting it . They are due to turning-off part of the brain. but rather to provide empirical evidence for the hypothesis that savant-like skills can be facilitated in a healthy individual by suppressing part of the brain with transcranial magnetic stimulation . 26 Such magnetic stimulation is known to inhibit the normal functioning of localised regions of the brain . Volunteers given this treatment. One participant said he was more ‘alert’ and ‘conscious of detail . savants have a paradoxical access to a wealth of information that resides equally within everyone but cannot normally be accessed . Snyder suggested that repetitive ‘transcranial magnetic stimulation’ may be used to temporarily facilitate savant-like skills in normal people .5 Hertz or 1 Hertz over the left fronto-temporal lobe of 11 healthy participants — an area of the brain implicated in the savant syndrome. because they see what’s in front of their eyes. and access to information which would not normally be associated with our everyday state of 164 .] allan Snyder 28 Snyder’s findings support aldous Huxley’s eliminative theory of the brain and also the extended theory presented in this book which concludes that it is due to the impairment or shutting-off of specific parts of the brain that results in mystical and psychic states. rather than what their conceptual minds think they are seeing .

with only a minute subset available for recall . reinforcement or constant recall to strengthen synapses .e . Pre-cognitive dreams which suggest the dilution of time betrays the fact that these experiences do not originate with the brain but pass through it — as suggested by many psychics.’30 Our recall.UNIVerSal Br aIN-MINd | Chapter 16 consciousness . is a better candidate for the complex calculations and recall (by reading the akashic records) that savants have . Facts or Assumptions? Medical science and those associated with it assume that the information is buried inside the brain . appears to be concept orientated . How does Hebb’s rule fit into all this? Surely this suggests a different type of memory mechanism 165 . mystics and metaphysicists — in the process getting filtered and clogged-up . the connections weaken on their own from the lack of stimulation . This produces the familiar near-death experience amnesia or the post-birth amnesia of a reincarnated being . according to Snyder . the savant has not revealed unknown or unexpected mechanisms in the case of drawing or perfect pitch. There appears to be no need for rehearsal. ‘since much evidence supports the view that we all store an enormous amount of information. But can this information be non-local? The invisible superstructure that supports the activities of the brain. like our drawing skills. 31 This blocks us from unfiltered information . should the savants’ astonishing feats of recall for detail reveal anything new about mental processing. when neurons repeatedly fire in a particular pattern. in this vein. If the connections so formed should later prove of little use.’ Snyder says. resulting from infrequent firings across the previously strengthened synapses.29 This suggests that the unusual skills of savants can be used as a diagnostic tool to probe information from lower-level mechanisms which is not available to introspection in the normal mind .’ calculations resides in us all. Snyder believes that the mental apparatus to perform `lightning fast. yet we know from the study of autistic savants that they can remember prodigious amounts of information from just one encounter with the stimulus spontaneously even decades after the event with photographic clarity . However. The physics of natural scenes already tells us how perspective must be computed by the brain and discrete frequency analysers are already known to be the primary auditory receptors . which has been discussed in this book. it becomes a memory . ‘Nor. that pattern becomes a semi-permanent feature of the brain — i . Impairment not only uncovers savant skills but intuitive knowledge and mystical visions . according to ‘Hebb’s rule’ in neuroscience. even though it is not normally accessible .

Cd-like audio recall. all explanations become easier and more natural when we take the view that the biomolecular brain that is visible to us is just the tip of an iceberg . fast calculations and video player-operations such as ‘fast-forwarding’ and ‘rewinding’ suggest an electromagnetic substrate which can be found in higher energy magnetic plasma bodies .] andrew Newberg and eugene d’aquili. unlimited and creative. There are invisible superstructures that Science is only beginning to suspect . all experiences can be interpreted by changes in the brain because the transmission passes through the brain . In order for the paradigmatic shift to occur in neuroscience. ‘See. they will never realise that the brain acts. just like a TV. neuro-scientists must look to cutting-edge physics for the wider view . he will be oblivious to the fact that the signals are being transmitted from a broadcasting station . These are only ‘uncovered’ or ‘unveiled’ more fully when biochemical operations in the brain fail . If that is the case. we have proof — the PeT scans show that the neural activity in the brain has changed. a ‘photographic’ recall. Individual consciousness is a secondary reality deriving from organic evolution and pure awareness . Unlike individual subjective consciousness. Unless the person takes a wider view — gets his eyes off the TV and looks around to see the background infrastructure of TV aerials or cables. In fact.jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS which is clearly not explained in current neuroscience – which studies only the biomolecular brain . Instead of trying to get the wet biomolecular brain to explain everything in piecemeal — like proposing an epicycle to explain each deviation from a planet’s orbit (before Modern Science) — it is time for a shift in paradigms . There are current scientific theories (taught in mainstream physics) which tell us that only 1% of the universe is visible to us . pure awareness is nonlocal. So long as neuroscientists are fixated on the brain. Neuroscientists 33 166 . why treat the visible brain as an end in itself? Isn’t it logically possible for an invisible superstructure to be supporting the more complex operations observed and currently being misattributed to mysterious processes in the wet biomolecular brain? The conscious self is a construct of evolutionary processes and is unquestionably distinct from pure awareness . The scientist. who exclaims.’ is missing the point . basically as a receiver and tuner . [emphasis added .

It is constantly looking for order and reason. Michael Gazzaniga writes that the left brain is constantly and reflexively generating theories to explain the internal and external events that occur around us . the 1d being would generate a plethora of theories to explain how the lines form up into a cube . Part-Time Scientist The mystic’s knowledge is experiential.2 Of course. To understand the difference. however. even when there is none — which leads it continually to make mistakes . representing the mystic. In forming a model of this cube. It tends to over-generalize. and it is because of that structure that we always attribute causes to everything that happens to us . frequently constructing a potential past as opposed to a true one . imagine reality as a 3d cube . the scientist. can only see lines — a 1d perception .’ While linear thinking and theory-making is associated with the left brain. can see 3d objects . It would appear superfluous to him to construct theories that the ‘separate lines make up the cube . The 3d being. Both have the ability to think abstractly . The only difference is in their perception of the world . The other being.1 findings suggest that the interpretive mechanism of the left hemisphere is always hard at work. we can consider two beings with different modes of perception — one being. can see the cube — its nature would be self-evident and axiomatic to him . In this example.C H a P T e r 17 full-Time Mystic. while Science generates theories it also 167 . seeking the meaning of events . the right brain is associated with spatial intelligence — which includes 3d perception . scientific knowledge is analytical .

at the same time. The mystic is therefore confronted with this dilemma . after getting acquainted with the latest 1d theories and then extending them to fit his observations . to fulfill a mystic’s social responsibilities the mystic has to find time to ‘update’ his scientific knowledge and relate his experience to this knowledge . This knowledge. In trying to communicate with the 1d observer and trying to relate to the latter’s theories. The mystic may not be adequately versed in the latest 1d (scientific) theories . It is here that many mistakes are made . He may not even have any interest in them previously or currently . The mystic would have to be a ‘full-time’ 1d scientist and 3d mystic — at the same time! even to ask one scientist to be an expert in two different areas of Science would be a tall order . This is particularly true of scientists . long-winded and ‘dead’ to him . 1d’ers may not always be very responsive to the new knowledge because they cannot readily relate to them .jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS checks it. He has to force himself to an unrewarding task of going back to 1d basics . In doing so. This also explains the current gap between Science and religion . firstly. is uneconomical. This will put fewer burdens 168 . To ask a mystic to promptly take an interest in something that he had already rejected a long time ago and now to become an expert in it would be almost impossible . 1d’ers have to embark on exercises to develop their consciousness and awareness . after many years of evolving to a new awareness in a higher dimensional consciousness. his 1d knowledge would be so extensive and intensive that the mystic would have a hard time trying to relate his 3d experiential knowledge to this vast 1d analytic knowledge of the scientist . this is because of the attachment that a scientist has to his body of knowledge that he had created and tested . so there is a correcting mechanism . which is highly prized by the 1d beings. choose to remain where they are and try to coerce and educate 1d’ers to a higher dimensional awareness through mental training . he has to now descend to lower-grade analysis to explain to 1d analysts his truths in terms of what they know . he has to tether his higher dimensional consciousness now to a lower dimensional consciousness in order to relate his 3d (experiential) knowledge to the existing 1d (analytical) knowledge . He would therefore expect the mystic to relate his knowledge to this body of knowledge . He may neither have the expertise nor the motivation to do this . the mystic often tries to interpret his 3d experiential knowledge in the context of 1d analytic knowledge. however. However. Secondly. The relevant theories and mathematics may be so far short of explaining the 3d observation that it may take decades or lifetimes to construct 1d theories that adequately describe them . Hence. there are very few mystic-scientists . However. Most mystics.

fUll-TIMe MySTIC. In higher dimensional perception. oscillates between two contradictory concepts or images .’ The whole universe was the size of a particle in the first instant that this universe was generated . most of us cannot perceive this directly or even imagine it (in our mind’s eye) .’ William James called this quality ‘ineffability’ and explains that no definite report of the content of the experience can be given by the subject in words . he edged Science out of a purely linear approach . It cannot be ‘proven’ within quantum theory .’ While (bottom-up) analysis (associated with the left brain) is natural for the 1d’ers. ParT-TIMe SCIeNTIST | Chapter 17 on teachers with higher dimensional consciousness . because the observer is part of the environment he is observing. Itzhak Bentov and rudolf rucker (this is not an exhaustive list) . possessing serial perception. Carl Jung. Notable examples include William James. Both contradictory ‘dimensions’ must be accepted at the same time to understand the nature of the electron or photon . What are considered theoretical deductions (logical extensions from axioms) in a lower dimensional space would be considered axiomatic (‘self-evident’) in a higher dimensional space . It is only because the dimensionality of our frame 169 . The dominant left brain. Gopi Krishna. Bohr’s complementarity principle is not mathematically derived from quantum theory — it was invoked on an intuitive basis to explain the conflicting theories which arose from experimental results . it cannot be imparted or transferred to others . which basically states that the reality of electrons or photons cannot be reduced to a (1d) particle concept or a (1d) wave concept. our bodies would be indistinguishable from the universe as every particle is connected to every other particle in time. If we perceived our bodies in all 4 dimensions (3 space plus 1 time dimension). although this can be understood abstractly. ‘The quality must be directly experienced. Experiential versus Analytic Knowledge Harman and rheingold say that ‘one of the primary characteristics of the experience of mystical states is that it does not lend itself well to precise verbal expressions . When Niels Bohr invoked the complementarity principle. There could also be intermediaries who are sympathetic to both parties and who have the ability to interpret the findings of one party to another . The mystic does not need theories because he has first-hand experience of it by altering the way his brain processes information from the environment or even changing the body-brain that he is operating in . beginning from the ‘Big Bang . the subject-object dichotomy breaks down . analysis diminishes and becomes superfluous for the 3d’ers (who appear to be using intuition or ‘direct knowledge’ — associated with the right brain) . Ken Wilber. They are experiential traditions .

What if the dimensionality of our frame of reference is greater than the universe? Then the universe would become an object in us . a mystic may appear very simplistic because he does not carry around a big bag of rigorous theories to support what he says . objects merge with the universe and the two become indistinguishable . tenuous nebulae. which represents a ‘bottom-up’ approach to knowing (similar to cognitive processes associated with the left brain) is necessarily incomplete. however. This is the shaky basis of what we call ‘objectivity . not multidimensional experiences . then as the dimensionality of his frame of reference increases. If a person was observing himself as an object. it is generally not associated with meditation in the layman’s mind . perceived in this frame of reference is devoid of subjectivity . Perhaps it has not been emphasised because there is a risk that the brain-mind may get ‘carried away’ with analysis which provides pseudo multi-dimensionality — multidimensional models. because 170 .jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS of reference is less than the dimensionality of the universe that we perceive our bodies as separate objects in a universe . which represents a ‘top-down’ approach to knowing. Its purpose is mainly to assimilate the experience of the right brain into the left brain’s framework . Multidimensional experience. as the dimensionality of the frame of reference of perception increases. he merges and becomes indistinguishable from the universe . To a scientist.’ The universe. gently luminous. linear theoretical analysis. glimmered within the infinitude of my being . and floating universes . a 1d analysis of the 3d experience would generate several self-contradictory (geometrically orthogonal) 1d theories . Since there is no theory. the earth. The entire cosmos. continents. The dichotomy between subjectivity and objectivity then breaks down . These are not ‘self-evident’ truths — they are disconnected correlates and cheap substitutes of multidimensional experience . compared to 2d or 3d experience. nothing can be communicated to the scientist in terms of linear theories — only observations . The knowledge gained by the mystic is axiomatic and self-evident . although analysis which is associated with the left brain is an integral part of meditation. like a city seen afar at night. a swelling glory within me began to envelop towns. Solar and stellar systems. when translated to linear scientific theories is therefore necessarily paradoxical and ineffable as each dimension is orthogonal (contradictory) to another . Paramahansa yogananda 3 Mystics perceive this directly and experience it first hand .

stating that such abilities have been underdeveloped in human beings . ParT-TIMe SCIeNTIST | Chapter 17 of the condition of logical self-consistency within each dimension . If the universe is a mirror. citing the lack of empirical evidence . the realities that mystics experienced and are experiencing are being increasingly reflected in modern scientific theories . only axioms. we would find that as our experience is enhanced. each dimension is ‘closed-off’ (insular) but unbounded (within that dimension) for a 1d’er . One clue to the development of polarities in knowledge generation is the ‘excluded middle . The scientists are not convinced. Science would become redundant . It can generate higher dimensional knowledge through linear correlates of higher dimensional experience . However. furthermore. until consciousness is brought to higher dimensions. Knowledge would become totally axiomatic and experiential . Polarities arise when the middle is excluded . his knowledge would be perceived to be of little value to the linear scientist . Science would still have a crucial role to play . experience is in the middle. asymmetric) logic.’ The second disadvantage is that since the 3d’er has no theories. as it stands in history. the mystic says that we do have the facilities to perceive reality directly. analysis leaves you at the poles . generates polarities. the need for linear analysis is reduced and can even be eliminated . If everybody took the mystic’s route. which in turn generates complexity . This is evidenced in the fractals ‘Cantor’s set’ and ‘Koch’s snowflake’ — both examples of complexity arising from excluding the middle . with new scientific instruments and unavoidable changes to scientific theories. This argument may be used to support analysis against experience . most of this knowledge is axiomatic . which excludes the middle. 171 . In fact. It may be difficult to communicate this knowledge to ‘linear analysts . End of Science One limitation of experiential mystical knowledge is its increased subjectivity. However. the ‘mapping’ is not an experience . there is a ‘one-to-one’ mapping of linear analysis to higher dimensional experience .’ aristotelian (bivalent.fUll-TIMe MySTIC. since. emergent properties brought about by the interaction of various dimensions (or theories) may be missed . However. then the excluded middle is the crack in the middle of the mirror — so that the attributes in one broken part of the mirror is reflected in the other mirror with reversed attributes . The difference between a linear mapping and a 3d experience is that the former is sequenced in time (correlating it with the left brain) but the latter is simultaneously perceived (correlating it with the right brain) .

the others vibrate and deform . the linear observers have to formulate a number of theories and laws to link disparate events . the difference between holistic experiential knowledge and ‘analytical knowledge by parts’ is the difference between knowing 12 edges or lines and their relationships and seeing a cube . is that it is portable — it can be easily communicated to others . So he formulates a theory. This theory then becomes a law . a linear observer sees 12 edges . The disadvantage of this knowledge is that it has to be reconstructed by the receiver involving a labourious process . ‘Subjectivity’ of Higher Dimensions There is an increasing integration of disconnected events and observations as the dimensions of consciousness increases . Then he formulates a theory from this relationship . However. the relationship between the edges is ‘self-evident’ (axiomatic) — there is no need for proof . however. This may introduce errors due to incorrect processing of the data and noise in the incoming signals . This is because they appear to move together . There is also a movement towards experience (and experiential knowledge) and greater subjectivity (a movement from theorems to axioms) . 172 . furthermore. To the linear observer-analyst this theory and law is meaningful . The ‘portability’ of scientific knowledge has made it popular . In a kind of ‘reverse engineering’ it takes the world apart and studies its components to see what relationship these components have with other components . To a certain extent. While a 3d observer may see a cube. these laws and theories are superfluous . furthermore. He empirically tests his theory . that for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction . Something similar happens when 3d sounds received by a telephone receiver is converted to 1d bits of data that travel along telephone lines . What is axiomatic to the 3d observer is theoretic to the linear observer . The discovered relationships (invariants or symmetries) are expressed in theories and laws .jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS Reality Decomposition in Lower Dimensions Bottom-up processing breaks the world into tiny pieces and then puts it back with theories and laws in a process of generalization . The linear theory appears simplistic to the 3d observer . To the 3d observer. this linear observer notices that these 12 edges have some relationship . all other linear experimenters record the same result . if he punches into one edge (let us imagine the cube as a wooden crate). also. However. Because of the lack of two dimensions. The subjectivity of 3d experiential knowledge means that the mystic cannot share his experiences with linear analysts in a direct way . this is ‘second-hand’ knowledge . every time he punches into one edge. The advantage of this knowledge. at least one other edge deforms in the opposite direction . for a 3d observer.

in the first instance.fUll-TIMe MySTIC. But it is not . from another point of view this subjectivity can be considered a prejudice generated by linear analysts-scientists . In hard Science. If all his listeners were ‘3d observers. generally.’ his knowledge would not be considered ‘subjective’ and ‘incommunicable . If a 3d observer outlines an experiment to be conducted with human measuring instruments (i . ParT-TIMe SCIeNTIST | Chapter 17 the ‘subjectivity’ arises partly due to the fact that his listeners are linear thinkers .e . this should be considered an objective result . the senses and the brain-mind) and the outcome of this experiment is confirmed by the majority of experimenters. the outcome is considered to be ‘objective’ only if the majority of experimenters record the same results using non-human measuring instruments .’ This ‘subjectivity’ is therefore. a measure of the disparity between the communicator’s and the listener’s dimensionality of consciousness . The only difference between an empirically-tested theory and an experientially-tested theory is that in the former the measuring instruments are non-human (or more generally. not self-conscious) . 173 .

These are valuable human experiences which can be studied to develop our scientific knowledge of the world around us and ourselves . even as far back as 2. Meditative techniques have been developed. ‘Spiritual’ drugs have also been used by certain cultures to facilitate entry 174 . the other is experiential . there will be more resonance between Science. Philosophy and religion .epilogue Redefining the Partnership There are mistakes and imprecision in scientific experiments . The experiences of religion should be analysed by Science in a respectful way for its own benefit — not to be summarily dismissed just because it does not conform to conventional scientific theory . as Science moves into an appositional phase — where conflicting and complementary internally self-consistent ‘linear theories’ are accepted (as in the case of the particle-wave duality in quantum physics). There are contradictions in scientific theories . Science would eventually mature and accept contradictory theories (which explain the same experimental results) as part of a multidimensional reality . This reality has been described in religious and metaphysical literature . Science and religion (more accurately Spirituality) are complementary — one is empirical.500 years ago. we will see a closer matching between scientific and mystical models of reality . In this way. to enter into this reality . Moving Forward There is much evidence to support the view that a different kind of reality is experienced when we develop our right holistic brain — a reality which is just being explored and described by Science . Just like religion. Science too has its share of tricksters and fraudsters .

in meditation. and even migrate from one reality to another . eye movements have been shown to correlate to neural activities in the relevant brain .| epilogue into alternate realities . depressed . this movement basically bring us back to the centre . It is a way for our left brain to get to know our right brain much better . When the two sides are in conflict. the spiritual goal is also an operational goal for living life to the fullest . ‘We may have two minds. frederic Schiffer says. Using genetic-engineering and ‘brain-engineering. Synergistic Relationship between the Brains The left and right brains in the human body have a synergistic relationship — each brain enabling the other brain to maximize its natural abilities . Since we are left-brain dominant. one mind . The real goal of spirituality appears to be the integration of these bodies — so that the two become one body. between the two brains . Hence. we frequently focus our eyes in between our eyebrows . harmony between the brains means harmony and integration between our ‘mental’ bodies and our ‘emotional’ bodies . our personality is harmonious and we feel a sense of mental well-being . anxious. or distinct parts of our personality . sophisticated electronic instruments and drugs may effectively cause the deafferentation of the relevant parts of the brain — and channel the mind-stream to different meditative states . On a metaphysical level. In fact. focusing at the centre means maintaining a middle position. 175 . Meditation also makes us more conscious of the contents of our sub-conscious . When they are similar.’ the future human brain may be customized to the user’s requirements — enabling ‘mind tourists’ or psychonauts to take tours to parallel universes and different states of consciousness safely. we feel confused. stressed.’ The emphasis on the right brain in meditation does not appear to be an end in itself . But a balance between right and left brain activity is also a mark of the genius . In the future.

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dwight (editor). Polanyi. laws of form. Quote from popular literature . Penguin Putnam Inc. damasio. Guidano. The MIT Press. Superself. Vince. Mineapolis. 1977 . Beacon Press. london. Nisbett & Wilson. Michio. Internet. Harcourt Brace & Company. 1999 . Higher Creativity. dwight (editor). Chapter 3: The Intelligent Intuitive ‘Unconscious’ 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 James. 1980 . Ballantine Books.. Hyperspace: a scientific odyssey through parallel universes. 2003 . daniel M . Ibid . p . 1989 . Wegner. G . Bruce and Mazulewicz. The Symmetry of God. The right Mind — Making Sense of the Hemispheres. ferris. 1996 . Guidano. 2003 . Ibid . 1983 . New york. Goddard. daniel M . 2004 . Klisz. Discriminating (Rational) Mind 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 einstein. rodney. 1994. 1980 . Ibid . 2001. Ian Wilson.) Why God Won’t Go away. 2000 . lankavatara Sutra. 1981 .25 . 177 . Ibid .. Wegner. The Mystical Mind. andrew and d’ aquili eugene. p . Ibid . New york. 2000 . albert. doubleday . Spencer. Ibid . 1987. Crook. Table adapted from Haidt. free association Books. 1970 . The Buddhist Bible. Penguin Books ltd. 1994 Brown. Goddard. Newberg. first published in 1890 . Primacy of the Intuitive. Haidt. fenton. 1970 .35 . and rae. 1996. 1964. pg 574 . fenton and Mazulewicz explain ledoux. 1972 . fortress Press.| referenCes 21 22 23 24 25 26 Spear. Paperback. Kaku. The Buddhist Bible. different Brains different realities? Web Page. Shirley & langan-fox. New york.144 . 1997 . Willis Harman and Howard rheingold. Newberg. Zajonc. Holtzman of Cornell University Medical College. 1984 . 1984 . Clark. The Varieties of religious experience. William.. robert e . time warps and the tenth dimension. 1999 . Beacon Press. Illusion of Conscious Will. libet. Crown Pub. 1993 . first published by Oxford University Press. andrew and d’ aquili eugene (and rause. 1980 . Geschwind. Bomford. p . Kristine. Chapter 2: Intuitive vs. 1986 . 1984. Shirley & langan-fox. McCarthy. The MIT Press. Illusion of Conscious Will. lankavatara Sutra. 2001 . Sidgwick & Jackson. Ornstein. reviewed by albert and Kaplan (1980) Jeffrey d . New york. london. Hoeldtke. Jake.

Superstrings and the Search for the Theory of everything.. Minneapolis. Three roads to Quantum Gravity. Jacob d . 1970 . Ballantine Books. 1996 . Peat. Vince. 1989 . Strange Matters. fortress Press. 1999 . fred alan. Boston University. Information Please. 1977 . The Mystical Mind. Science News. Basil. david. Newberg. Strange Matters. fortress Press. los angeles. 2001. Vince. Book of ecclesiastes. department of Cognitive and Neural Systems. Simon and Schuster. andrew and d’ aquili eugene. Orient Book distributors. 1998 . andrew and d’ aquili eugene (and rause. Scientific american feature article. Vince. Bernard J . Hirosi Ooguri. Higher Creativity. New york . Phoenix Paperback. New york. Tom. Ibid . yogananda. Tom. 1997. Paul davies. 1989 . 1999 . Beacon Press. Seven Wonders. 1999 . Parallel Universes. 1988 . 2001 . Steven S Gubser. Ibid . Penguin Putnam Inc. Surangama Sutra. quoting andrew Strominger (Harvard University). andrew and d’ aquili eugene. Nikos logothetis and Jeffrey Schall. Smolin. Ofer aharony. Technical report. Wallace. Self-realization fellowship. The Mystical Mind. The Mystical Mind. 1999 .) 2002 . andrew and d’ aquili eugene (and rause. Ibid . Paramahansa. Ibid . New york. august 2003 . 1995 . Strange Matters. The Complementary Brain: Unifying Brain dynamics and Modularity. The Buddhist Bible. Bohm. Ballantine Books. New york. Baars. Newberg. routledge. Chapter 5: Split Reality 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 Newberg. Tom.) Why God Won’t Go away. The New revised Standard Version. Juan Maldacena. 2000 . andrew and d’ aquili eugene. Information in the Holographic Universe. Ibid . Berkeley Publishing Group (a division of Penguin Group.jay alfred | BraINS aNd realITIeS Chapter 4: Complementary Thinking and Feeling 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 ron Cowen. Siegfried. Newberg. The Mystic experience. 1946 . The Christian Bible. Wolf. f . Willis Harman and Howard rheingold.) 2002 . an imprint of Orion Books ltd. New Scientist September 2002 Newberg. david and Hiley. The Undivided Universe. Tom.) Why God Won’t Go away. and yaron Oz. Stephen. Thomas. Berkeley Publishing Group (a division of Penguin Group. String Theory and Gravity. Beckenstein.) 2002 . In the Theater of Consciousness. andrew and d’ aquili eugene (and rause. Minneapolis. lee. fortress Press. 1999 . autobiography of a yogi.) 2002 . dwight (editor). Mineapolis. Ballantine Books.. Oxford University Press. 178 . large N field Theories. New york. Newberg. Siegfried. Berkeley Publishing Group (a division of Penguin Group. Strange Matters. Heron. Siegfried. 1984 . Bhagwan Shree rajneesh. Berkeley Publishing Group (a division of Penguin Group. Goddard. Siegfried. Grossberg. Verses 1-13 . 2001. 2004 . 2001.) Why God Won’t Go away.

Harvest Books. Theology in the age of Scientific reasoning. 2000 . 2001 . New york. 1986.) Why God Won’t Go away. Ibid . 1999 . Newberg. Technical report. 2001. Blakeslee. Minneapolis. Ibid . Michael. Ibid . The Complementary Brain: Unifying Brain dynamics and Modularity. Chapter 7: Deactivating the Brain 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 Newberg. Saying attributed to Siddhartha Gautama. fortress Press. f david Peat. Heaven and Hell. Joe. Blavatsky. Ballantine Books.. 1990 .. Stephen. Goddard. aldous. Translated from the Pali by Thanissaro Bhikkhu . The Mystical Mind. dwight (editor). Minneapolis. Newberg. The MIT Press. 2001. Surangama Sutra. andrew and d’ aquili eugene. The Mystical Mind. dwight (editor). alfred. Potthapada Sutra. New york. Ibid . 179 . Vince. andrew and d’ aquili eugene (and rause. andrew and d’ aquili eugene (and rause. 1954 . daniel M . autobiography of a yogi. Ballantine Books. Vince. daniel M . Our Invisible Bodies. andrew and d’ aquili eugene. The Hole in the Universe. Ibid . Ibid . ramachandran.. Megabrain. fortress Press. Newberg. The Buddhist Bible. The Secret doctrine. Newberg. P . doubleday. Illusion of Conscious Will. Whitton. V . los angeles. The Bible. about Potthapada.) Why God Won’t Go away.) Why God Won’t Go away. andrew and d’ aquili eugene. 1999 . 2005 . H . The Mystical Mind. Ballantine Books. Cornell University Press. Superstrings and the Search for the Theory of everything. 1946 . 1970 . The Buddhist Bible. The MIT Press. Trafford Publishing.) Why God Won’t Go away. S . New york. Harper and row Publishers Inc . Ibid . and fisher. New york. Wegner. K C. dN 9. 2003 . Chapter 8: Virtual Reality 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 Cole. Phantoms in the Brain. Hutchison. Boston University. 2001. Ballantine Books.| referenCes 12 13 14 Grossberg. Surangama Sutra. Ibid . 1988 . 1991 . department of Cognitive and Neural Systems. USa. The Mystical Mind. Quill (an Imprint of HarperCollins Publishers). Huxley. 1986 . Ibid . Minneapolis. Illusion of Conscious Will. Canada. Newberg. Newberg. fortress Press. 1999 . 2003 . Beacon Press. ‘Be Still and know I am God . Wegner. How Scientists Peered Over the edge of emptiness and found everything. Paramahansa. 1970 .’ Goddard. yogananda. Jay. 1888 .. Joel l . Sandra. 1998 . New york. Chapter 6: The Brain and Mystical Experiences 1 2 3 4 5 Murphy. andrew and d’ aquili eugene (and rause. Minneapolis. andrew and d’ aquili eugene. 2001. Self-realization fellowship.. Newberg. andrew and d’ aquili eugene (and rause. Vince. life between life. Ibid . Beacon Press. Ballantine Books. Vince. 1999 . Nancey. fortress Press.

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